Hi, I’m Jillian!
I’ve been asked, “When did you know you wanted to become a writer?” To that question, I have no answer. There was no deciding moment, no specific time I can place in history. I’ve always been a writer, it’s always been a part of me.
I began penning stories when I was small, using my parents computer to print out graphics and create accompanying text.
Books were always a big part of my life — whether it was snuggling up with my mom and sister for a chapter of The Wizard of Oz before bedtime, or devouring book after book in the Babysitters Club or Goosebumps series.
The first book that really made me think and feel? Lois Lowry’s The Giver.
After taking a variety of writing workshops, I finally made the decision to pursue an MFA in Writing. To say it was life changing would be an understatement. My MFA in Writing for Children from Simmons College armed me with the knowledge and tools to both craft and dissect literature for children and teens.
I have always been drawn to history, especially quirky little events and incidents that often get overlooked. I write historical fiction, contemporary fiction and genre-bending speculative historical fiction for teens and middle-grade readers.
Aside from writing for children, I am also in the midst of a years-long process of writing a family memoir which documents the history and stories of my maternal grandmother’s Polish immigrant family in Buffalo, New York.
Writing can be such a lonely pursuit, that’s why it’s important to stay connected. I’m a member of The Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI) and a writing/critique group in Somerville.