Layne, Steven L. 1965-

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Layne, Steven L. 1965-

PERSONAL:

Born July 16, 1965, in Crawfordsville, IN; son of Richard L. and Suzie (a tax advisor and preparer) Layne; married Deborah Dover (an educator and writer), May 23, 1987; children: Grayson, Victoria, Jackson. Ethnicity: "Caucasian." Education: Judson College, B.A., 1987; Northern Illinois University, M.S.Ed., 1992, Ed.D., 1996. Hobbies and other interests: Reading, old movies, singing, tennis, volleyball.

ADDRESSES:

Home—St. Charles, IL. Office—Department of Education, Judson College, 1151 N. State St., Elgin, IL 60123-1498. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Educator and writer. Former counselor at an inpatient psychiatric unit; former fifth-grade teacher in Carpentersville, IL, then Oak Brook, IL; Judson College, Elgin, IL, associate professor of education and literature, 2004—. Affiliate or former member of Northern Illinois Reading Council (also president, 2005-06), Literacy Volunteers of America's Fox Valley Affiliate, DuPage Literacy Roundtable, and Illinois Reading Council.

MEMBER:

International Reading Association, College Reading Association, National Council of Teachers of English, Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Assembly on Literature for Adolescents, Special Interest Group Network on Adolescent Literature, Children's Literature Assembly, Alpha Upsilon Alpha.

AWARDS, HONORS:

Winn Research Award, 1997; named Illinois reading teacher of the year, 1999; ICARE Reading Award, 2000; National Educator Award, Milken Family Foundation, 2001; Edwin A. Hoey Award, U.S. outstanding middle school language arts teacher, National Council of Teachers of English, 2001; Missouri Library Association "best of the best" designation and Hal Clement Award for best new science-fiction novel for young adults, both 2001, and International Reading Association "young-adult choice" designation and inclusion on Texas Lone Star Top-20 list, both 2003, all for This Side of Paradise; children's choice, International Reading Association and Children's Book Council, 2002, for The Teachers' Night before Christmas, and 2004, for My Brother Dan's Delicious; teachers' choice selection, Learning magazine, 2006, for T Is for Teachers: A School Alphabet.

WRITINGS:

Thomas's Sheep and the Great Geography Test, illustrated by Perry Board, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 1998.

Life's Literary Lessons: Poems for Teachers, International Reading (Newark, DE), 2001.

The Teacher's Night before Christmas, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2001.

This Side of Paradise (young adult novel), North Star Books (St. Charles, IL), 2001.

My Brother Dan's Delicious, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2003.

Verses for Dad's Heart, illustrated by Gail Greaves Klinger, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2004.

Thomas's Sheep and the Spectacular Science Project, illustrated by Perry Board, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2004.

The Principal's Night before Christmas, illustrated by James Rice, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2004.

Verses for Mom's Heart, illustrated by Gail Greaves Klinger, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2005.

(With wife Deborah Dover Layne) T Is for Teachers: A School Alphabet, illustrated by Doris Ettlinger, Sleeping Bear Press (Chelsea, MI), 2005.

Over Land and Sea: A Story of International Adoption, illustrated by Jan Bower, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2005.

Preacher's Night before Christmas, illustrated by James Rice, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2006.

Mergers (young adult novel), Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2006.

Love the Baby, illustrated by Ard Hoyt, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2007.

(With Deborah Dover Layne) P Is for Princess: A Royal Alphabet, illustrated by Robert Papp and Lisa Papp, Sleeping Bear Press (Chelsea, MI), 2007.

Contributor to books. Contributor to journals, including Illinois Reading Council Journal, Reading Teacher, Reading Horizons, and Contemporary Education.

SIDELIGHTS:

Steven L. Layne told CA: "I write as a way of giving something back more than anything else. Sometimes my audience is children, sometimes teens, and other times adults. I believe that there is an emotional ‘connectedness’ that readers experience with well-written text, and that's what I'm trying to achieve with my work. I want the reader to feel something when they read my work—to connect emotionally and to care deeply about what it is they are discovering as they read.

"One of my greatest joys is when I am being introduced and the person speaking starts to describe my work and becomes tongue-tied, unable to categorize me. I defy being put in a box, which is why my picture books for children are often followed by a book of poems for adults; a novel for teens usually comes next. This kind of diversity keeps me connected to different age groups and allows me the chance to experience a revitalizing sense of freshness in all of my writing."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, February 1, 2002, Hazel Rochman, review of This Side of Paradise, p. 934.

Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2001, review of This Side of Paradise, p. 1486.

Publishers Weekly, May 4, 1998, review of Thomas's Sheep and the Great Geography Test, p. 215; September 24, 2001, review of The Teacher's Night before Christmas, p. 57.

Reading Today, August, 2001, review of Life's Literary Lessons: Poems for Teachers, p. 32; December, 2005, "Teacher, Author, Leader," p. 29.

School Library Journal, September, 1998, Kathy Piehl, review of Thomas's Sheep and the Great Geography Test, p. 175; January, 2002, Joel Shoemaker, review of This Side of Paradise, p. 136; May, 2003, Kathleen Whalin, review of My Brother Dan's Delicious, p. 122; July, 2004, Sally R. Dow, review of Verses for Dad's Heart, p. 124; June, 2005, Deborah Vose, review of Over Land and Sea: A Story of International Adoption, p. 120; August, 2005, Corrina Austin, review of T Is for Teachers: A School Alphabet, p. 114.

Voice of Youth Advocates, February 1, 2002, review of This Side of Paradise, p. 447; May 1, 2006, review of Mergers.

ONLINE

Steven L. Layne Home Page,http://www.stevelayne.com (May 19, 2007).

Judson College Web site: Steven L. Layne Home Page,http://www.judsoncollege.edu/ (June 13, 2006).