• Braiding the Verse Novel: Margarita Engle

    “Braiding the Verse Novel”  is a series of interviews I did with writers of novels –  and one biography  – in verse.  We had our conversations over the summer of 2012. I’ve written articles about verse novels for School Library Journal and NH Writer which draw on these conversations in different ways.  Here, I’m posting the full responses from each of the writers who allowed me to ask them questions. READ MORE

  • Folktale Festival Picture Show

    Hari Tiwari and Terry    photo by Deb Cram

    Here’s a photo gallery from our Folktale Festival celebrating  The Story of a Pumpkin by Hari Tiwari.  She told the story in her ELL class in Laconia, New Hampshire.  It was a story her father told to her when she was a little girl. And now the New Hampshire Humanities Council has published the tale in Nepali and English with the help of the READ MORE

  • Braiding the Verse Novel: Carol Fisher Saller

    “Braiding the Verse Novel”  is a series of interviews I did with writers of novels –  and one biography  – in verse.  We had our conversations over the summer of 2012. I’ve written articles about verse novels for School Library Journal and NH Writer which draw on these conversations in different ways.  Here, I’m posting the full responses from each of the writers who allowed me to ask them questions.  Nearly everyone who has read my novel, The Good Braider, asked me why I wrote in the spare lines of verse.  My readers’ questions have caused me to explore my own craft and then to explore the question with these articulate, generous writers. Each week I will feature a new novelist.


    Edide’s War by Carol Fisher Saller is a novel in poems.  Each of Carol’s poems could  stand alone as a character portrait or vignette.  “A poignant look at boyhood before and during the long years of World War II,” writes Kirkus in a starred review.

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  • The Story of a Pumpkin, a tale from Bhutan

    The Story of a Pumpkin, a folktale in Nepali and English, has just been published by the New Hampshire Humanities Council.  The photo is from our  Folktale Festival celebrating the tale told by Hari Tiwari who now lives in Laconia, NH.   This book is the fruit of the work of many: new neighbors from Bhutan, folklorist Jo Radner, artist Susan Gaylord, and me, in my job as literacy director at the NH Humanities Council.   The story was told to us by Hari Tiwari whose father told her the tale when she was a small girl in Bhutan. You can read about the steps we took, from collecting folktales in ESOL classes to proofreading in Nepali and English. The book is distributed by the University Press of New England.  Soon we will have a teacher’s guide.

  • The Good Braider

    “In this free verse novel for young adults and adults, Viola’s strikingly original voice sings out the story of her family’s journey from war-torn Sudan, to Cairo, and finally to Portland, Maine. Selected as a Best Book of the Year by the American Library Association, Bank Street College of Education,  & School Library Journal; winner of the  Boston Authors’s Club Award and Maine’s Lupine Award.”  Here is a link to Discussion Guides.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxd1swIZwHg

    South Sudanese-American rapper OD Bonny performs a tribute he wrote for The Good Braider, “A Girl From Juba.”

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