Member Profile

Jessica Young

Photo: Grannis Photography 2015

Jessica loves using her imagination to make books for kids. The same things make her happy now as when she was young: dancing, painting, music, digging in the dirt, picnics, reading, and writing. Her award-winning picture book, MY BLUE IS HAPPY is a 2014 Charlotte Zolotow Highly Commended Title and was included on the 2015 OLA Blue Spruce Award list. She is also the author of SPY GUY THE NOT-SO-SECRET AGENT, the FINLEY FLOWERS chapter book series, the HAGGIS AND TANK UNLEASHED early chapter book series, and the upcoming picture books PLAY THIS BOOK and PET THIS BOOK (Bloomsbury 2018).

Jessica has twenty years of experience teaching elementary and middle school students, and she loves doing school visits! Find out more: www.jessicayoungbooks.com

Phone number:
c/o Writers' Union of Canada

Publications

My Blue is Happy. Candlewick Press, 2013
Haggis and Tank Unleashed — All Paws on Deck. Scholastic, 2016
Haggis and Tank Unleashed — Digging for Dinos. Scholastic, 2016
Haggis and Tank Unleashed — Howl at the Moon. Scholastic , 2017
Finley Flowers — Original Recipe. Capstone, 2015
Finley Flowers — Nature Calls. Capstone, 2015
Finley Flowers — New & Improved. Capstone , 2015
Finley Flowers — Art-Rageous. Capstone, 2015
Finley Flowers — Super Spooktacular. Capstone, 2017
Finley Flowers — Fin-tastic Fashion. Capstone, 2017
Finley Flowers — Pet-rified. Capstone, 2017
Finley Flowers — Room to Bloom. Capstone, 2017
Spy Guy the Not-So-Secret Agent. Harcourt, 2015
Play This Book. Bloomsbury, 2018
Pet This Book. Bloomsbury, 2018

Awards

Marion Vannett Ridgway Award for My Blue is Happy, 2014
Charlotte Zolotow Highly Commended Title for My Blue is Happy, 2014
Eligible for National Public Readings Program :
Yes

WITS

Presentation Description

1/ Story Gardening: Your mind is like a plot of land. When you plant your idea seeds, then water, weed, and wait, you can create your own stories. No one else has a piece of earth like yours. What will you grow there? This presentation covers the writing process from start to finish, including collecting and planting ideas, cultivating a unique voice, using writing tools (literary devices) and story structure, and revising. Jessica’s published books, favorite books, and works-in-progress are used as examples. A Q&A session following the presentation provides an opportunity to further discuss material covered and address questions about the writing and publishing process.

2/ Writing Tools—Fun with Language: Students explore various “writing tools” and examine how they can liven up and lyricize picture books and chapter books. Using her own books as examples, Jessica discusses and leads activities that cover: similes and metaphors; alliteration; rhyme and rhythm; onomatopoeia; and homophones. Students learn to identify literary devices and other wordplay to try out in their own writing. A Q&A session following the presentation provides an opportunity to further discuss material covered and address questions about the writing and publishing process.

**Presentations can be tailored to schools' needs.

Presentation Length:
Typically 35 — 55 minutes, depending on grade level/type of presentation
Genre:
Picture books and chapter books
Grades:
Pre-K though 6th
Audience size:
Up to 300 per presentation or 30 per workshop (preferred)
Workshop Description:

1/ Show Your Colors, Find Your Voice: Students read Jessica’s picture book, My Blue is Happy, identifying similes and alliteration and discussing subjectivity and creativity. After some interactive, large-group activities, students practice developing their own written and visual expression, coming up with color similes and illustrations to go with them. The end product is a colorful class “quilt” of text and images that can be displayed as a reminder of the process. A Q&A session following the presentation provides an opportunity to further discuss material covered and address questions about the writing and publishing process.

**Workshops can be tailored to schools' needs. I also do workshops on creating characters, crafting plots, and other topics.

Northern OAC WITS:
No
One session:
$Please email for details
Two sessions:
$Please email for details
Three sessions:
$Please email for details
Four sessions:
$Please email for details
One session:
$Please email for details
Two sessions:
$Please email for details
Three sessions:
$Please email for details
Four sessions:
$Please email for details
GST:
GST not applicable