Ann M Martin

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Early Life

Ann M Martin was born on August 12,1955 in Princeton, New Jersey, United

States. Her full name is Ann Matthews Martin, and she's a children's writer. As a child her favorite activities were reading and writing.""I had always enjoyed writing, even as a child. Before I could write, I dictated stories to my mother. I took creative writing classes and that sort of thing as a kid, but I wanted desperately to be a teacher, so that was what I prepared for." At Smith College, Martin double-majored in psychology and early childhood education. Out of college, Martin taught elementary school for a year, working with students challenged by learning disabilities such as dyslexia." Martin soon realized she wanted to help with children's books rather then education. She started off as an editorial assistant, then assistant editor, finally editor and senior editor from 1978 to 1985.

Getting Involved

Bummer Summer was the first book Martin published, in 1983. Most of her books are based on actual events that happened to her and others on imagination and memories. Inside Out was based on her work as a therapist for autistic children it wasn't something that happened in my childhood. Stage Fright is the most autobiographical because she had stage fright as a child and that inspired her for the book. Soon Martin came to see herself as a writer more then an editor.

Choices & Results

In 1985 Jean Feiwel,from Scholastic came up with the idea of a series about babysitting and asked her to write four stories. Scholastic decided the books were doing extremely well when the series hit number one on B Dalton Juvenile Bestseller List in 1987. They decided to step up the release of the books from one book every other month to one book every month. ""From the outset, the series was a collaborative effort, and Martin and Feiwel, as well as other editors, determined early on that the series--while sometimes dealing with serious issues such as death, racism, divorce, and peer pressure--would not deal with other hot-button issues such as child abuse, alcohol or drug abuse, or the death of a parent. "

· "The author attributes the success of her books to a combination of humor and relevance""

In Her Words

""Whether I'm writing about a handicapped child or divorce, I believe in keeping it down-to-earth. I've received letters from children who have said that the characters in the books are their friends. So something in there makes these books seem real."I turned to writing as an outlet for both my emotions and humor. I feel I'm more articulate and funnier on paper, but the more I write, the more comfortable I become speaking. It's a delightfully vicious cycle. The marriage of my love for children's literature with this cycle makes for a continually gratifying creative process.""

Aftermath

In addition to being an author Martin also supports many community activities. She was the co-founder of the Lisa Novak Community Libraries and founder of the Ann M. Martin Foundation, which aided children, education and literacy programs, homeless people, and animals. "I love to feel that every week is full of a lot of different kinds of things," Martin told Lodge. "I've always worked better when I'm working on many things at one time."" "The language we use to discuss autism—and the way that we view its treatments and ways of coping with it—has changed a lot in the past 30 years, hasn't it? Everything is changing so quickly. I described Rose as having Aspergers, but when I was finishing the book, they were removing that term from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. By the time the book came out, she'd be described as being at one end of the spectrum. It was fascinating that it changed so quickly; Aspergers is gone from our lexicon. I also wanted the book to be realistic.""

Words For Her

"If you are a woman who grew up reading books in the '80s, you probably have a soft spot-and maybe a deep nostalgia-for the name Ann M Martin." -Jen Doll

Annotated Bibliography

Authors and Artists for Young AdultsBiography in Context