Jane Harrington, Wordsmith

A child of the Washington DC burbs, Jane Harrington grew up with five siblings, a beagle named Charlie and a parakeet named Pudgie. Summers were spent submerged in the local swimming pool, and winter days waned in front of TV reruns of Laugh-In and The Twilight Zone. Despite many hardships (no computers, cell phones or microwave popcorn, to name just a few) she reached adulthood in the late 1970s. By 1990 she had three daughters, to whom she'd read aloud the entire collection of children's books at the local public library. That's when she started writing.

For almost twenty years Jane's writing has been inspired by her three daughters. Their lively personalities regularly surface in her fiction. Meghan, her oldest daughter, held the spotlight in her first published short stories, and her youngest, Lucy, was strikingly similar to the central character of her first published book, LUCY'S COMPLETELY COOL AND TOTALLY TRUE E-JOURNAL (a national bestseller in Scholastic Book Fairs, hitting the top five). The escapades of her "middlest" daughter, Emma, sparked FOUR THINGS MY GEEKY-JOCK-OF-A-BEST-FRIEND MUST DO IN EUROPE, as well as the spin-off novel, MY BEST FRIEND, THE ATLANTIC OCEAN, AND OTHER GREAT BODIES STANDING BETWEEN ME AND MY LIFE WITH GIULIO (both Junior Library Guild selections). Jane's fourth book, EXTREME PETS! (a YALSA Quick Pick for Young Adult Readers), was inspired by some other wild things in her care--a menagerie of arthropods, reptiles and other critters that shared her house and classrooms during her years as a park naturalist and science teacher.

With her daughters off on their own real-life adventures, Jane looks to her husband and shelter-pup for amusement and is teaching college writing. Her wordcraft has turned to literary fiction and creative nonfiction, published in Chautauqua, Mom Egg Review, Anthology of Appalachian Writers, Portland Review and other journals. She is a fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and is presently working on a novel set in the mystical, fragile Blue Ridge Mountains that are now her home.

A FEW FAM PHOTOS:


There's no place like foam. (Lucy at Foam Henge, Natural Bridge, VA.)

Emma on her RISD Roman holiday, in front of the Bernini "turtle fountain."

Meghan!

Writerdog is here! (Fiona, the newest "daughter.")

Jonny, having a GRAND time.

Aaaah, it's the sweet little Kitty.

Niece Lauren testing an age-old axiom, and proving that, in fact, two heads AREN'T better than one.

Kind of an old pic...which one is Jane?

Jane & sisters, taking a break from a hike in Beara, Ireland.

Jane & her #1 EXTREME PET, Longfellow. (Photo talents donated by the clever and brave Iris, daughter-for-a-year from France.)

Winter view of the Blue Ridge, from the new writing loft. ("I promise I'll never complain about anything ever again!" Jane says.)