Born to Write

Ever wonder what your favorite authors were like as kids? Born to Write tells the stories of how six extraordinary children transformed their early struggles into spellbinding bedtime reading for kids around the world.

To ease the pain of being ostracized by her classmates, Madeleine L’Engle escaped to an invented world every night in her bedroom. Lucy Maud Montgomery lost her mother as a baby and her father appeared only sporadically throughout her life. And Philip Pullman, a seasoned traveler by age 10, used his long journeys by ship as inspiration for his remarkable novels.

In Born to Write, Charis Cotter chronicles the early lives of these and other much-loved children’s writers, including Christopher Paul Curtis, C.S. Lewis and E.B.White, revealing how each author’s achievements and losses, triumphs and tragedies, helped shape our most beloved books. 


“accessible, thought-provoking, and fun to read.” —Booklist

“will intensely satisfy, not to mention inspire, the child who is already a reader and writer.” —Resource Links 

“Fascinating … intriguing … irresistible … will have young readers hoping that Cotter plans a series of books similar to this must-purchase and her earlier titles.” VOYA

L.M. Montgomery

C.S. Lewis

E.B. White

Madeleine L'Engle

Philip Pullman

Christopher Paul Curtis


VOYA Nonfiction Honor List

2010 Best Books, Canadian Children’s Book Centre

2011 Storytelling World Honors Award

2010 Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction finalist

2011 Rocky Mountain Book Award finalist

Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award 2010 nomination