Authors Visit Kutztown

Children’s Literature Conference

               On April 12th and April 13th, Kutztown University held its annual Children’s Literature Conference. I had the opportunity to attend on April 12th to listen two well-known children’s authors speak to KU students, KU faculty, and local children. They spoke of their inspirations, their methods, and everything that had to with writing for young children.

Andrea Warren

Andrea Warren writes true stories about children living through some of the world’s most horrific moments. She researches and interviews real life people to tell the stories of their childhood. Warren brings these historical moments to the attention of young readers all over the world.

At the Children’s Literature Conference, she spoke of how she wants children today to know the heroic actions of people their age. Often, children’s voices are left out of the narrative in historical events. Yet, they are present for and impacted by these events. Why aren’t we hearing more about them? Luckily, Andrea Warren does the storytelling for us. Some of her novels include: Under Siege: Three Children at the Civil War Battle for Vicksburg, Pioneer Girl: Growing up on the Prairie, and How a Vietnam Orphan Became an American Boy.

 As an aspiring author that devours history like it’s a warm, gooey chocolate chip cookie, I loved listening to Andrea Warren speak of her work. She combined my two favorite things—history and storytelling!

Brendan Wenzel 

Brendan Wenzel is an author and illustrator for children’s books. He initially got his start by posting his drawings on the internet, which led to him being discovered. Throughout his career, he has created images for popular stories and authors. He even wrote his own children’s book too!

At the Children’s Literature Conference, Brendan spoke about his passion for animals and how that led to his career. He went from drawing animals to being able to travel around the world to learn about these creatures and tell stories about them. Some of his credits include being the illustrator for the stories Some Pets by Angela Diterlizzi and One Day in the Eucalyptus, Eucalyptus Tree by Daniel Bernstorm. Wenzel also wrote the story They All Saw a Cat.

Brendan told the audience about how he travelled the globe with his wife and how it inspired his writings and drawings. As a writer myself, I felt myself becoming inspired by the way he talked about seeing the world around him. He spoke of how people (particularly artists) see the world differently and left me wanting to hop on a plane and fly to some random location to begin writing my next adventure.

I want to thank Andrea Warren, Brendan Wenzel, and every other author/illustrator that came out to Kutztown to talk to us about their work and life.