Bio

Hi! Welcome to my website. I’m Shelley, the author of forty children’s books and a book of poetic prose for new mothers. My favorite genres–for reading and writing–are picture books, chapter books, middle-grade fiction and adult memoir.

I moved often as a child, between the American states of Minnesota, Oregon and Texas and the Canadian provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan. I was always the shy new girl, adjusting to different schools, peers and neighborhoods. Books were a constant, comforting presence in my life.

My favorites were Pippi Longstocking, Charlotte’s Web, Harriet the Spy and A Wrinkle in Time. I also read every Encyclopedia Brown and Charlie Brown book I could find, plus every Nancy Drew mystery in the library. At times, I’d annoy the librarian, asking for more! Reading has been an ever-present passion in my life.

I attended Augsburg University in Minneapolis, USA, where I majored in English Literature. A few years after graduation, I returned to Augsburg and earned a kindergarten-sixth grade teaching certificate.

I’ve applied skills from both majors in my work as a children’s non-fiction book editor (Dillon/Macmillan) and as a freelance writer for numerous educational publishers.

I also worked at a children’s bookstore (Red Balloon Bookshop in Saint Paul, USA) for five years. My duties there included Backlist Book Buyer. I’ve also taught summertime writing workshops at a library (for preteens) and week-long writing classes at young-author conferences (grades 3-8).

I live in Minnesota, USA, with my husband, a high school social studies teacher. We have two grown sons. Erik lives in Chicago, USA, and Anders is still in college.

I’m represented by literary agent Tina P. Schwartz of The Purcell Agency. Tina is based in Chicago.

Shelley Swanson Sateren, children's book author

(Note: the color photocopies taped to the wall in my study, in the photo below, are a story I had published in Highlights for Children called “I Don’t Like Tomatoes!” I wrote it after my husband, Roald, planted seventeen tomato plants in our yard one summer!)

Home page photo 2011

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