Instructor Stories: Laurie Keller


It is with great pleasure that I introduce our newest mini-class instructor (and very possibly critique group mentor) . . .  

Laurie Keller!

If you're part of our membership, you  should have access to “Writing Humor with Laurie Keller” already. She also agreed to mentor a discounted critique group this term, and I can't think of a better person you could have as a mentor if you want to make children laugh. We're still hammering out the details. (Get it? Probably not, if you haven't watched her mini-class.) 

If you're familiar with the ALA awards, which include the Caldecott and the Newbery, Laurie won the 2017 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for WE ARE GROWING, her first early reader. She wrote the following song to thank the award committee for choosing her.

Writing Humor

Raise your hand if you like to make people laugh. Do people groan when you make puns? Is your imagination captured by interesting coincidences? Do you love funny parodies?

If any of those apply to you, you're going to love Laurie Keller's new mini-class

In Laurie's class, I learned how to:

  • use puns, parody, and wordplay in a story
  • make the most of sideline stories
  • lighten a heavy moment
  • present facts in a more interesting way
  • play with voice
  • add unexpected details
  • find inspiration
  • use humor to escalate emotion in a story
  • make the most of page turns

You're going to enjoy this class, because we all enjoy humor, right?

Best of all, there's a live workshop on August 29 at noon, PDT, where Laurie will review some student submissions and answer questions. It's going to be fun!

Laurie's Books

Laurie has so many great children's books that I'm just going to share some of the highlights. Many of them have some kind of educational or nonfiction element. Some have even been turned into fun educational videos. 

ARNIE THE DOUGHNUT was so popular that Laurie got to create a fun chapter book series based on it. 

Book Giveaway Details

I will be giving away a copy of one of Laurie Keller's books. Any book written and/or illustrated by Laurie Keller is an option. To enter, just comment on this post with the book you'd like to win. You don't have to be a student or buy anything to enter.

If you're outside the United States, just choose a book carried by Book Depository.

For additional entries, you can share the post on social media and post a link to where you’ve shared in the comments (preferably as a comment to your original comment so that all of your entries are grouped together).

I’ll close the contest at midnight, Pacific Time, on August 25. Thanks for reading and sharing!

Blog Contributors

Instructor Photo: Myrna Foster

Myrna Foster writes and edits content for Storyteller Academy and the WriteRiders Newsletter for SCBWI Nevada. She has spent a lot of time teaching and coaching children, including five years as a preschool teacher. She's also worked as a journalist, and Highlights High Five has published six of her poems. 

Arree Chung is an author/illustrator and the founder of Storyteller Academy. Arree’s Ninja! series has received starred reviews from Kirkus and School Library Journal. Kirkus also gave a starred review to Mixed, which recently won the FCGB award. 

Today Arree lives a creative life, making stories for children. Arree spends most of his time making picture books, writing middle grade novels, and sharing his love for art, design, and storytelling with kids and dreamers everywhere.

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