Sharon Creech. Ohio-Born Author. Sharon Creech was born in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio, on July 29, 1945. Ohio Roots. She grew up in South Euclid, Ohio. She lived in this house with her parents (Ann and Arvel), her sister (Sandy), and her three brothers (Dennis, Doug, and Tom).
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Sharon Creech was born in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio, on July 29, 1945.
She grew up in South Euclid, Ohio. She lived in this house with her parents (Ann and Arvel), her sister (Sandy), and her three brothers (Dennis, Doug, and Tom).
She has used this town and her experiences there in many of her books, where she refers to it as Bybanks, Kentucky.
She describes her family trips to Kentucky:
“. . . we often visited Quincy, where my cousins lived (and still live) on a beautiful farm, with hills and trees and swimming hole and barn and hayloft. We were outside running in those hills all day long, and at night we’d gather on the porch where more stories would be told. “
“When I was young, I wanted to be many things when I grew up: a painter, an ice skater, a singer, a teacher, and a reporter. It soon became apparent that I had little drawing talent, very limited tolerance for falling on ice, and absolutely no ability to stay on key while singing. . .
. . . I also soon learned that I would make a terrible reporter because when I didn’t like the facts, I changed them. It was in college, when I took literature and writing courses, that I became intrigued by story-telling. . .”
She received her bachelor’s degree from Hiram College in Ohio.
She continued to George Mason University in Washington, D.C., for her master’s degree.
While in Washington, she married, had two children (Rob and Karin), and was divorced.
“Later, I was a teacher (high school English and writing) in England and in Switzerland. While teaching great literature, I learned so much about writing: about what makes a story interesting and about techniques of plot and characterization and point of view.”
In 1979, she persuaded the headmaster of TASIS (The American School in Switzerland) England School, a grade school for the children of expatriate Americans, in Thorpe, England, to hire her as a teacher of literature. There she met Lyle Rigg, the assistant headmaster. They married three years later.
Her husband (Lyle Rigg) is now the headmaster of The Pennington School in Pennington, New Jersey.
“I started out writing novels for adults: The Recital and Nickel Malley were both written and published while I was living in England (these books were published in England only and are now out of print).
But the next book was Absolutely Normal Chaos, and ever since that book I have written mainly about young people.”
Absolutely Normal Chaos was published in 1990.
Walk Two Moons—the first of her books to be published in America in 1994
--won the Newbery Medal in 1995 as well as other awards
--This is the story of 13-year-old Salamanca Tree Hiddle, from Bybanks, Kentucky, who is traveling across the country to Idaho with her grandparents. Along the way, she tells them of “Phoebe Winterbottom, her disappearing mother, and the lunatic.” It began as a follow-up to Absolutely Normal Chaos
SUMMARY: This is the story of 9-year-old Dennis, his dog Bo, and a ghost visitor. Dennis has been visited by ghosts before, but this one is his uncle Arvie, who seems to want something and talks strangely, as in: “Fraggle pin Heartfoot a wig pasta.” Dennis unravels Arvie’s words and helps him complete three tasks.
SUMMARY: Zinnia Taylor lives on a farm in Bybanks, Kentucky, with a slew of brothers and sisters. One summer, Zinny discovers an overgrown trail, twenty miles long, which she becomes determined to clear. Along the way, she uncovers mysteries about her family and herself.
SUMMARY: Thirteen-year-old Domenica Santolina Doone (“Dinnie”) is whisked away from her family and taken to a boarding school in Switzerland by her Uncle Max and Aunt Sandy. Although she doesn’t want to be there, she gradually comes to love this new place with its people who’ve come from all over the world.
SUMMARY: Sophie and her
cousin Cody tell, in
alternating journal entries,
the story of the summer
they sail across the ocean
from Connecticut to
Ireland with a third cousin
and three uncles. Sophie also makes up stories along the way about “Bompie,” the grandfather they are traveling to meet.
The Wanderer won the Newbery Honor Award in 2001.
Love That Dog is the story of Jack, his dog, his teacher, and words. The story develops over the course of a school year through Jack’s responses to his teacher, Miss Stretchberry, who wants her students to write poetry. Although he hates poetry at first, he begins to find poems that inspire him. His favorite is a poem titled “Love That Boy,” by Walter Dean Myers. This poem finally gives Jack a way to tell the whole story of his dog.
< Sharon’s dog, Tia
Ruby Holler is a beautiful and mysterious place, deep in the country. An older couple, Tiller and Sairy, live there and are looking for new adventures, each of
them hoping to set off on a trip. When they invite the “trouble twins,” Dallas and Florida, to join them, all of their lives take new turns.
Ruby Holler received the 2002 Carnegie Medal.
SUMMARY: This is the story of Granny Torrelli, her 12-year-old grand-daughter, Rosie, and Bailey, the boy next door. The friendship of Rosie and Bailey has its ups and downs, but Granny’s wit and experience help them smooth out the kinks.
Summary: Twelve-year-old Leo has a talent for transforming the everyday into the extraordinary. That’s why they call him fog boy. He’s always dreaming, always replaying things to his brain. He fantasizes about who he is in order to discover who he
will become. As an actor in the school play, he is poised and ready for the curtain to open. But in the play that is his life, Leo is eager to find out what part will be his.
SUMMARY: In an old stone tower high in the mountains of Switzerland lives an angel with an attitude. The angel is annoyed with “peoples” and unsure of her (his?) mission. When a colorful American girl, Zola, arrives, she challenges the angel, and figs start flying. Together Zola and the angel rescue a band of orphans, reawaken the sleepy village, and explore what it means to be a “peoples” and to be an angel.
Mrs. Creech often imbeds
serious topics into her stories, including such themes as independence, trust, childhood, adulthood, and death, often using humor to soften them.
She also varies her writing style. Books such as Love That Dog and Heartbeat were written in verse, whereas others like Ruby Holler and Walk Two Moons are in a narrative style.