Sklansky, Amy E(dgar) 1971-
SKLANSKY, Amy E(dgar) 1971-
Born February 7, 1971, in Chattanooga, TN; daughter of R. Allan (a federal judge) and Gail (a teacher; maiden name, Martin) Edgar; married Joseph J. Sklansky (an attorney), August 9, 1997; children: Phoebe Edgar. Ethnicity: "Causasian." Education: University of Virginia—Charlottesville, B.A. (English and American studies).
Home—259 Beacon St., Apt. 61, Boston, MA 02116. Agent—Judy Sue Goodwin Sturges, Studio Goodwin Sturges, 146 West Newton St., Boston, MA 02118. E-mail—[email protected].
HarperCollins Children's Books, New York, NY, editor, 1993-98; Studio Goodwin Sturges, Boston, MA, editor, 1998—.
(Compiler) ZOOMzingers: Fifty+ Body and Brain Teasers from the Hit PBS TV Show, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1999.
(Compiler) ZOOMfun with Friends; Fifty+ Great Games, Parties, Recipes, Jokes, and More from the Hit PBS TV Show, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1999.
ZOOMfun Outside: Fifty+ Outrageous Outdoor Games, Experiments, and More from the Hit PBS TV Show, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 2000.
ZOOMjournal, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 2000.
ZOOMdos You Can Do: Fifty+ Things You Can Craft, Bake, and Build, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 2000.
(Adapter) Richard B. Stolley, editor, Life: Our Century in Pictures for Young People, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 2000.
Skeleton Bones and Goblin Groans: Poems for Halloween, illustrated by Karen Dismukes, Henry Holt (New York, NY), 2004.
WORK IN PROGRESS:
From Egg to Chick (nonfiction), illustrated by Pam Paparone, for Harper-Collins (New York, NY), publication expected in 2005.
After working for five years as an editor at HarperCollins, Amy E. Sklansky began writing her own books for children. Her first titles are a handful of companion books to the television series ZOOM, created by Public Broadcasting Station WGBH in Boston, Massachusetts. For them she compiled and created activities, experiments, crafts, recipes, and projects based on various themes. With editor Richard B. Stolley, Sklansky adapted the best-selling adult work Life: Our Century in Pictures for children. When Life rolled off the presses in 2000, it was to good reviews. Remarking favorably on "this superb collection of carefully chosen, powerful images with pithy captions," a Publishers Weekly contributor dubbed it "a visual treasure trove." It was chosen a Publishers Weekly best children's book of the year.
In 1998 Sklansky joined the Studio Goodwin Sturges, a studio founded in Boston's South End in 1989 by Judy Sue Goodwin Sturges, a professor of illustration at the Rhode Island School of Design and a former art director. The first title Sklansky authored there was From the Doghouse: Poems to Chew On, a collection poems from a dog's eye view. "Dogs come in so many different sizes, shapes, colors, and personalities that I thought it would be interesting to think like one for awhile," she commented in a Studio Goodwin Sturges publicity brochure. "I asked myself, 'What kinds of things do dogs think about every day? What kinds of things do they dream about?'"
Sklansky enjoys poetry and admits to having always had one or more dogs while growing up, so verse was a natural choice, as was a first-person voice. Also, as she explained in her brochure, "I like that poetry is a puzzle—that you have to wrestle with words and really chew on them before you can spit them out into a poem that works." To illustrate From the Doghouse, a team of four illustrators sewed nearly 120,000 tiny beads onto cloth, creating pictures. Some of the artists' own dogs inspired several illustrations. From the Doghouse caught reviewers' attention. School Library Journal's Shawn Brommer found the poems suitable for young children, stating "New readers will feel comfortable with the easy rhyme and bouncy rhythm."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Kirkus Reviews, August 1, 2002, review of From the Doghouse: Poems to Chew On, p. 1144.
Publishers Weekly, October 30, 2000, review of Life: Our Century in Pictures, p. 77; July 22, 2002, review of From the Doghouse, p. 117.
School Library Journal, August, 2002, Shawn Brommer, review of From the Doghouse, p. 180.
A Conversation with Amy E. Sklansky (publicity brochure), Studio Goodwin Sturges, c. 2002.