Beth Anderson has always been fascinated with words and language – from sound and meaning, to figurative language and point of view, to cultural and scientific aspects of language. After earning a B.A. in linguistics and a M. Ed. in reading, she taught English as a second language for more than 20 years. She believes that, immersed in her classroom community, she learned more than her students as she advocated for them and encouraged them to share their voices. Surrounded by young people from all over the world, with literature as her favorite tool, Beth was fascinated by the power of books to teach, connect, and inspire.
Encouraged by her elementary school teachers, Beth carried with her the itch to write. From poems, plays, and puppet shows, to stories and memoir pieces… through Illinois, Wisconsin, Ohio, Connecticut, Georgia, Texas, and into Colorado, it followed her. In 2013, she began her journey writing for children. Combining her love of writing with the joys of discovery and learning, she found her niche with narrative nonfiction and historical fiction picture books.
To Beth, writing is mining. It’s digging deep inside for special memories, emotions, and meaning. It’s burrowing into history for inspiring characters and moments that change the course of events. It’s delving into the how and why and what if and seeing the past through the lens of the present. Then the search for just the right words begins – words that will create voice, bring characters to life, and reveal the heart of the story. Shine the light. Discover the gems. Shape and polish, polish, polish.
When she’s not writing, she might be weaving, gardening, exploring nature, or playing with her grandkids. Born and raised in Illinois, she now lives near the mountains in Colorado. Beth believes in laughter, learning, and investing in young minds. And…that truth really is stranger than fiction.
Beth Anderson’s work is represented by Stephanie Fretwell-Hill of Red Fox Literary.
Here are some blog posts about Beth’s writing journey:
- Agents and Editors and Rejections, Oh My!
- A Day in the Life of a Children’s Writer
- Finding Help Along the Way
- Organization Optimization
- Late Bloomer Series on Lindsey McDivitt’s blog
- Listen to Your Characters
- No Man—or Woman—Is an Island for NF Fest 2020
- Writing is Mining: Show vs Tell interview for The Wonder of Words
- Unpacking the Power of Picture Books: Bringing History to Life! (interview on Lizzie Demands a Seat and “Smelly” Kelly and His Super Senses)
- Being There: In Search of Setting on Grog Blog
- Mentor Text Talk on ReFoReMo blog