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Writers/Artists

We are dedicated to tirelessly reading manuscripts, hearing stories, and looking at artwork to find the best emerging multicultural talents to publish works for AcuteByDesign. We find our writers and artists as fascinating as they are talented. Read on to get to know a bit more about each of our inspired authors and illustrators.

Laura Pearl Spivack

Author

Laura Pearl Spivack is the author of Pogo's Patchwork Blanket. 

Laura Pearl is a mediator and forensic social worker. She works with children and families in the family court system. 

Joel Tietjen

Author

Joel Tietjen is the author of Matthew, the Math Explore: In the Secret Realm of Nath. 

Joel writes educational adventure books for elementary and middle school students, as well as political and science fiction books for adults. 

Dr. Gilbert G. Campbell, Jr. 

Author

Dr. Campbell is the author of This is my Story...Is This Your Story? Confronting Depressing and Suicide

Gil is a retired American Baptist minister. A Virginia native, he is a third generation minister, and during his forty-five-year career served as a senior or transitional pastor of churches in Massachusetts, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Florida. 

Laura Stroebel

Author

Laura is the author of Animals Are People Too

Laura Stroebel has been a Connecticut middle school educator for 18 years. Over that time, she has met hundreds of children just like the characters in these poems and loved teaching them all. Laura says that every classroom is special, and so is every family. 

Rod Martinez

Author

Rod is the author of Birthright.

 

Rod Martinez writes middle grade and young adult adventure/mysteries. Growing up on Marvel Comics and Twilight Zone as he did, the inspiration for Birthright was inevitable. 

Dr. Arnold O.Thompson

Author

Dr. Thompson is the author of  The Dark Side of the Gospel

Dr. Arnold Thompson, a retired minister of twenty-eight years is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute, Florida Atlantic University and Evangelical Bible College and Seminary. 

Tyrelle Smith

Illustrator

Tyrell is the illustrator for Princess MeeCheli and Just Indian.

 

Tyrell is an artist from Cleveland, Ohio, where he attended the Cleveland Institute of Art and majored in illustration.

A big fan of fantasy and science fiction, he always strives to give his own artwork a sense of scale, and epic, mythic quality. 

Patricia Norki Nater

Author

Patricia is the author of Dance of the Antelope: A Ghanaian Cinderella Story.

 

Patricia Norki Nater began writing stories at a young age. One of her earliest and fondest story-writing memories is when her fifth grade teacher, Mr. Osei, was so pleased with a poem she wrote about the Christmas season and shopping in the Makola Market of Accra, Ghana that he read the poem to the class, showed it to the other teachers and displayed it on the classroom bulletin board.

Verónica Rosado

Illustrator

Verónica is the illustrator for Heartfelt, the Special Reindeer and Abuelita's Tree.

 

Verónica has always admired the Victorian and early 20th century children’s book illustrators and painters. As a child, she was hypnotized by these kinds of images, doubly so if fairies or other magical creatures were depicted.

Tracie Mitchell

Illustrator

Tracie is the illustrator for Moving Day for Alex.

 

Tracie is a visual and performing artist and has been throughout the country and overseas working in the arts. She currently lives in New York City and is originally from the small town of Wintersville, Ohio near the border of the state, which she describes as Steeler Country.

Joey Lawson

Author

Joey is the author of There I was...Here I Am.

Joey Lawson is an emerging writer whose storytelling is a throwback blend of Baldwin and Ellison. Raised under what could politely be called “difficult circumstances,” he entered a life of crime at a young age, was imprisoned plural times, but managed to turn his life around. 

Jane Elliott

Illustrator

Jane is the illustrator of Beatrice and the POGS.

 

Jane Elliott explores the world of art making through various mediums, including drawing, painting, photography, metal sculpting, woodworking, costume making, and surface pattern design. 

Meagan J. Meehan

Author

Meagan is the author of Abelea's Adventure.

Meagan J. Meehan is a published author, poet, cartoonist, and produced playwright. She is also a stop-motion animator and an award-winning abstract artist. Meagan works as a journalist and writes for a range of publications specializing in Art & Entertainment and Lifestyle & Leisure.

Meg Petrillo 

Illustrator

Meg is the illustrator for Abela's Adventure.

 

Meg Petrillo is an illustrator who grew up on the outskirts of Queens, NY. She devotes a lot of her time to creating art and encouraging new artists. She learned art at a public high school and SUNY FIT. Her work can be seen at MegPetrillustration.tumblr.com.

Cynthia MacGregor

Author

Cyn is the author of Moving Day for Alex, Heartfelt: The Special Reindeer and Abuelita's Tree

 

Cynthia, or “Cyn,” as she likes to be called, is a veteran children’s writer. She has published numerous fiction and nonfiction titles including Octopus Pie and Ants in His Pants.

Michael Sharpe

Author

Michael is the author of The Last Drop of Sunshine, There's a Tiger in My House, and The Legend of MeeCheli, The First African American Princes: The Secret Ndongo Kingdom.

 

Nothing gives Michael Sharpe greater joy than seeing or hearing about a happy child—except, perhaps, being the cause of that happiness. 

Nikki Key

Illustrator

Nikki is the illustrator for The Last Drop of Sunshine and When I Got a Sister.

Nikki is originally from a tiny town in east Texas and moved to New York in her twenties.

She majored in studio art at The City College of New York and spent a year of intensive figure study at The Art League of New York.

Samantha Kennedy Pohl

Author

Samantha is the author of When I Got a Sister.

 

Samantha, new to children’s book writing, found her inspiration for doing so in the smiles of her two daughters.

With a B.S. in Human Biology from Kettering College, she has always valued learning and saw a need for books that put a charming twist on explaining life’s confusing happenings to little ones. 

Jackie Neypes

Author

Jackie is the author of Just Indian.

 

Jackie Neypes is a dedicated teacher in her hometown of Anza, California. At an early age Jackie was the ambitious type. She was heavily involved in sports and school events. 

Wanda Coppedge

Author

Wanda is the author of Dirty South and Cain and Able

Wanda Coppedge is from Washington, DC and has served as an English instructor for over 17 years in the public and private sectors as well as a lecturer at Howard University and Maryland University. She’s earned her degree in Theater Arts at the University of the District of Columbia. 

Matsue Z. Wiles

Illustrator

Matuse is the illustrator of The Lost Bicycle.

A native of Monrovia, Liberia, Matsue relocated to Louisiana in the early '80s so that her father could attend Louisiana State University (LSU). The Wileses returned to Liberia four years later, only to seek shelter in Baton Rouge again in the '90s to escape the brutal civil war in Liberia.

Cory Hill

 

Author

Cory is the author of The Lost Bicycle and Beatrice and the POGS.

 

Percussionist, composer, and storyteller Cory Hills is the creator of “Percussive Storytelling,” a program that fuses percussion instrumentation with oral storytelling, creating exciting sonic worlds for both children and adults.