Petrick, Neila Skinner
Petrick, Neila Skinner
Married; husband's name Tom. Education: University of Texas, Austin, B.A.; University of Texas, Dallas, M.A.
Author, video writer, and producer. Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, TX, writer and photographer; Italy News-Herald, Italy, TX, editor; Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX, began as an editorial assistant, became writer-editor; Federal Emer-gency Management Agency, lead publication information officer; has served as a writer-producer for the news media, entertainment field, and numerous corporations.
Silver medal at the New York Film & Video Festival; Associated Press Managing Editors Award for writing; two Matrix awards.
Jane Long of Texas, 1798-1880: A Biographical Novel of Jane Wilkinson Long of Texas: Based on Her True Story, historic sketches by Mary Evelyn Jones, Prime Time Press (Austin, TX), 1995.
Jane Wilkinson Long: Texas Pioneer (juvenile nonfiction), illustrated by Joyce Haynes, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2004.
Katherine Stinson Otero: High Flyer (juvenile nonfiction), illustrated by Daggi Wallace, Pelican Publishing (Gretna, LA), 2006.
Neila Skinner Petrick has worked as a writer-producer for the news media, entertainment field, and numerous corporations for several years. Her writing career began when she served as writer and photographer for the Corsicana Daily Sun in Corsicana, Texas. She later worked as an editor for the Italy News-Herald, a weekly newspaper for Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, and the Dallas Morning News, where she began as an editorial assistant and later became a writer-editor. In addition, Petrick worked in public relations for the Federal Emergency Management Agency as the lead publication information officer. She is the author of Jane Long of Texas, 1798-1880: A Biographical Novel of Jane Wilkinson Long of Texas: Based on Her True Story and two juvenile nonfiction books, Jane Wilkinson Long: Texas Pioneer and Katherine Stinson Otero: High Flyer. Petrick has been the recipient of national and regional awards for her work, including the silver medal at the New York Film & Video Festival, the Associated Press Managing Editors Award for writing, and two Matrix awards.
Petrick's 2006 book, Katherine Stinson Otero, is an illustrated biography of the life and adventures of Katherine Stinson Otero, the fourth American woman to be certified as an airplane pilot back in the early days of aviation. Katherine's love of flying started at an early age. Despite the fact that in the early twentieth century aviation was a male-dominated field, Katherine was determined to fly. She and her mother first approached the Wright Brothers, who were building and successfully flying planes, to teach Katherine to fly. But when they refused, Katherine and her mother went to see Max Lillie, a renowned pilot, who finally offered to teach Katherine to fly. Soon after, Marjorie, Katherine's sister, became a pilot too and the girls' mother started a flying school. Katherine went on to set numerous flying records, and she also worked for the Red Cross as an ambulance driver during the World War I.
Many critics praised Katherine Stinson Otero, such as Booklist reviewer Carolyn Phelan, who called the book "an attractive, clearly written presentation." Critic Jeannine D. Van Eperen, in her review of the book for the Gotta Write Network, noted that Katherine Stinson Otero "is a charming and wonderfully illustrated story of the life of a truly interesting woman." "Overall, this is a good choice for anyone interested in strong women and/or aviation history," maintained critic Anne Chapman Callaghan in School Library Journal.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Air Power History, December 22, 2006, Andie Neufeld and Logan Neufeld, review of Katherine Stinson Otero: High Flyer, p. 52.
Booklist, June 1, 2006, Carolyn Phelan, review of Katherine Stinson Otero, p. 101.
Children's Bookwatch, July 1, 2006, review of Katherine Stinson Otero.
School Library Journal, June 1, 2006, Anne Chapman Callaghan, review of Katherine Stinson Otero, p. 140.
Gotta Write Network,http://www.gottawritenetwork.com/ (May 6, 2006), Jeannine D. Van Eperen, review of Katherine Stinson Otero.
Pelican Publishing Web site,http://www.pelicanpub.com/ (August 12, 2008), author profile.