Naomie Laurent was awarded The Brown Bookshelf Scholarship and says it “allowed me the ability to pursue an in-person workshop that would have otherwise been out of my current budget. I recently stepped back from my current job to try to pursue writing full time and not having to worry about paying for this workshop was a true blessing.”
Naomie has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts and also studied creative writing and television at Columbia College Chicago, where she earned her BA. Though she currently lives in New York City, briefly resided in Los Angeles, and is a former resident of Chicago, she is first and foremost a Bostonian. She describes herself as a “blerd” (black nerd) with a fondness for fantasy and horror stories featuring anything from talking animals to zombies. When she is not busy caring for her cat Winter, being a “play auntie” to various children, moving to different states, or playing Euro-style games, she is finishing up her many writing projects. She is currently working on a young adult historical fantasy set in pre-Civil War Boston and a magical Caribbean island, and a contemporary middle grade fantasy loosely based on Dungeons & Dragons.
Naomie used her scholarship to attend our Writing for the Educational Market workshop and says “I loved the networking opportunities and the personalized feedback I received from the faculty and fellow workshop participants. Overall, I feel far more confident that I could do this writing thing full time and opportunities exist out there to do so.”
She adds “I knew very little about the education market, despite having a book published with an educational publisher (Great Minds). Everything in that workshop was brand new information for me and the resources have been incredibly helpful.”
She’s looking forward to inspiring kids through her craft: “My goal is to write some educational texts that can be more engaging and diverse for students. I work with high school students as a tutor and see some of the test excerpts and educational texts they read in school and how many struggle with the content (especially my students who are recent immigrants struggling with non-inclusive texts). I hope I can broaden what’s available.”