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Write to a Writer: Sharon Draper

When it comes to reading and writing, Sharon Draper gets very excited and her enthusiasm is contagious to everyone around her. Not only is Draper a distinguished Ohio author, but she's also an educator, having taught junior and senior high students for about thirty years. Sharon Draper's success was acknowledged nationally when she was named 1997 National Teacher of the Year.

You've probably read her books. Tears of a Tiger came out in 1994 to instant success. There's also Ziggy and the Black Dinosaurs, which eventually became a series. Or you may be a fan of the Hazelwood High School students in the books, Forged by Fire and Darkness Before Dawn. Draper's books are popular with teens because refuses to gloss over the tragedy: "Abuse and death are topics that need to be discussed by young people…. I talk about these things because, unfortunately, those are the realities of life for many teenagers today."

While she spends much of her time traveling to conventions and schools all around the country, Draper continues to write stories for and about teens. In her mind, she has inspiration all around her. "There are thousands of teenagers in schools today. Each one of them has a story."

Do you have a question on writing for Sharon Draper? She's looking forward to hearing from you and answering your questions.

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