Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

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Make Way for Ashley! A Birthday Tribute

A poem written on the occasion of Ashley Bryan's 96th birthday.   What a Morning! Sing to the Sun!  Walk Together Children! Uh-Huh! Uh-Huh!  Dancing Granny’s movin’ her feet.  It’s Ashley’s day! Flying-High sweet!    It’s been said that The Night Has Ears.  Now the story’s told — his birthday’s...

Lift Every Voice: Dreams Never Realized

My mom and dad truly laid the foundation for my writing life by reading to me and my siblings every night — giving me a heart for stories. And there were many moments that followed that inspired my literary journey. Here is one.In February of 1991, my father showed me...

Mind the Gaps: Books for ALL Young Readers

HBAS keynote speaker Vaunda Micheaux Nelson.When Roger invited me to deliver the keynote for today’s program, I was a bit intimidated. He told me that the idea for the “Mind the Gaps” theme was inspired by Christopher Myers’s essay “Young Dreamers,” published in The Horn Book last November. Christopher’s essay...

Different Drums: Wiggiling

The Horn Book Magazine asked Vaunda Micheaux Nelson, “What’s the strangest children’s book you’ve ever enjoyed?”My mother introduced me and my siblings to the wonderful weirdness in Howard R. Garis’s Uncle Wiggily tales. Garis gave us old Uncle Wiggily Longears and his adventures with Sammie and Susie Littletail, Johnnie and...

No Crystal Stair: Author Vaunda Micheaux Nelson's 2012 BGHB Fiction Award Speech

“Knowledge is power! You need it every hour! Read a book!”With words like these, how could I have resisted falling under the spell of Lewis Michaux? I am thrilled that his story has been embraced by so many others. The man who said, “If you don’t know and you ain’t...

2010 Coretta Scott King Author Award Acceptance

There’s an old Western expression — You can never step in the same river twice. Soon this moment will be behind me. I can never get it back. So please bear with me and resist the urge to cattle-prod me off the stage before I’m through.Sixteen years ago, the pioneer...

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