• MFACJAn2020Guests

    Jan 2020 Residency Visiting Writers & Faculty

    Rebecca Albertalli (Graduation Speaker)

    Rebecca Albertalli is the award-winning and #1 New York Times bestselling author of Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda (now a major motion picture Love, Simon). Her other novels include The Upside of Unrequited, Leah on the Offbeat, and What If It’s Us in collaboration with Adam Silvera. Albertalli also has her doctorate in clinical psychology and lives in Atlanta, GA.

    Linda Sue Park

    Linda Sue Park is the Newbery-winning author of A Single Shard. Her books are award-winning and have been featured on many best lists from Publisher Weekly, School Library Journal, ALA, Chicago Public Library, and others. She is also the author of When My Name Was Keoko (Publisher Weekly and School Library Journal Best Book), Project Mulberry, Bee-Bim Bop!, A Long Walk to Water, The Kite Fighters (California Young Readers Medal Finalist) among others. Linda Sue lives in New York.

    ALVINA LING (VP, EDITOR-in-CHIEF at Little, Brown Books for young readers)

    Alvina Ling is the VP, editor-in-chief at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. Ling has edited numerous award-winning books including a Newbery honor, a Caldecott Honor, a Coretta Scott King Medalist, Golden Kite Award winner and more. Ling has been a champion for publishing underrepresented voices and was one of the founding members and former chair of the Children’s Book Council’s Diversity Committee. Alivina Ling has worked as an editor for Brandy Colbert, Grace Lin, Jerry Spinelli, Andrea Davis Pinkney, Libba Bray among others.

    JAson WALZ

    Jason Walz is a writer, illustrator, and graphic novelist living in Minneapolis, MN. He is the author of Last Pick and Last Pick: Born to Run a graphic novel series, the first two of a trilogy. His books have garnered stars from Kirkus and Booklist. He is also the creator of the Eisner-nominated graphic novel Homesick, the online comic anthology Crap Shoot, A Story for Desmond, and several short story comics. 

    Deborah Kovacs (Co-Founder of Walden Pond Press) 

    Deborah Kovacs is co-founder and core contributor to Walden Pond Press, the joint imprint of HarperCollins and Walden Media specializing in middle-grade fiction. Authors published by Walden Pond Press include: Anne Ursu (Breadcrumbs, The Real Boy, and the forthcoming The Lost Girl); Laura Ruby (York Series); Laurel Snyder (Orphan Island); Elana K. Arnold (A Boy Called Bat Series), and many others. As part of Walden Media’s previous collaboration with Penguin Books for Young Readers, Deborah helped acquire and publish Ingrid Law’s Savvy and Scumble, both New York Times bestsellers. Deborah mentors developing authors in conjunction with Hamline University’s MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults and with Simmons University’s MFA in Writing for Children. Deborah is the author of more than thirty children’s books, both fiction and nonfiction.

    Jan 2020 Returning Faculty 

    Elana K. Arnold 

    Swati Avasthi

    Brandy Colbert

    Laura Ruby

    Sherri Smith 

    Anne Ursu

    Marsha Chall

    Laurel Snyder

    Phyllis Root

    Jackie Briggs Martin

    Kelly Barnhill

    Claire Rudolf Murphy

    Eliot Schrefer 


     See faculty bios here 

    Visit the Residency Archives to see all past guests and graduation speakers.