Barbara Jean Hicks

Barbara Jean HicksAn award-winning author and professional wordsmith as well as a credentialed teacher in English/Language Arts, Barbara Jean Hicks, also known as “Barbara Jean, the Story Queen,” is an ideal presenter for aspiring writers of all ages. Barbara engages, entertains, educates and inspires young authors while supporting teachers' efforts to help students meet Common Core Curriculum standards. Barbara started writing children's books after an unkind review of one of her thirteen published romance novels: “Ms. Hicks really ought to be writing for children; no one else could possibly appreciate such silliness!” After hiding in bed for a week, certain she would never write again, Barbara made up her mind to take the reviewer's comment as a personal challenge. The delightful result was JITTERBUG JAM: A MONSTER TALE, which received numerous starred reviews and children's book awards, including honors as an ALA Notable Children's Book and a Banks Street Book of Outstanding Merit. It has been translated into five languages and released in nine countries, and has sold stage and audio rights. More important, Barbara discovered that writing for children is her true love. Her additional books for kids include I LIKE BLACK AND WHITE, I LIKE COLORS, THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER KITTY, MONSTERS DON'T EAT BROCCOLI, and her two most recent books, A SISTER MORE LIKE ME and AN AMAZING SNOWMAN, both based on the 2013 Disney animated feature film FROZEN. Barbara was invited to view an early screening of the film at Disney Studios before writing her manuscripts in order to understand the story and the characters. A seasoned presenter, Barbara has experience teaching at the preschool, middle school, high school and community college levels; has worked as author-in-residence, program facilitator and parent educator for an elementary school; and has served as a supervising teacher for an online charter school for grades 7-12. She has also written marketing copy and edited and proofread manuscripts for numerous trade publishers. Barbara enjoys speaking to teachers, librarians, parents and students of all ages about writing, the writing life, and the “stories behind the stories.”