Storyteller: Mélina Mangal
Mélina Mangal is the author of short stories and biographies for youth, including The Vast Wonder of the World: Biologist Ernest Everett Just, winner of the Carter G. Woodson Book Award and named an NCSS/CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People. Mélina’s newest picture book is Jayden’s Impossible Garden, winner of the Strive/Free Spirit African American Voices contest, with “an abundance of STEAM connections and wonderful character representation” (Booklist, Starred Review). Mélina also works as a school library teacher in Minnesota and enjoys spending time outdoors with her family, whether it’s in her backyard or hiking in the woods. Visit her online at melinamangal.com.
On writing for children:
“I write for children, creating stories that reflect their lives, instill pride, and spark curiosity, wonder, and joy. Nothing is more satisfying than knowing I’ve connected with a young reader—a future scientist, dancer, leader? Writing for children opens up the world.”
What was the most valuable or memorable experience of AMPLIFY for you?
Being in the company of stellar storytellers and learning from the wide range of community members in the children’s book world made Amplify an invaluable experience. The Amplify Black Stories program opened up new avenues and spotlighted community resources to help place our stories in the hearts and hands of young readers. The many creative ideas and validating affirmations continue to buoy me.
“Writing for children opens up the world.”