Mary Louise Sanchez

My college sweetheart and I have been married forty-seven years. We have four grown children and eight grandchildren. I was born and raised in southern Wyoming and use that setting for many of my stories. I graduated from the University of Wyoming where I credit a children's literature class for introducing me to the best of children's literature. I used this knowledge and passion when I taught elementary school children and later in my career as a teacher/librarian and now, as a writer-in-progress.

Both sides of my family colonized New Spain (New Mexico) in 1598, making me my own cousin on at least two different family lines. This family history has fueled my passion to study genealogy and I'm always searching my Hispanic heritage for our unique stories.

My favorite children's author is Tomie DePaola and my favorite reading genre is historical fiction, although I continue to read the best of children's literature so I can learn to be a better writer. The majority of my works-in-progress are historical fiction, based on my heritage, because it affords me the opportunity to let other Hispanics see themselves in my stories and it opens the windows for others to learn about the Hispanic experience.

The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators recognized my unpublished, middle grade novel, THE WIND CALLED MY NAME, by awarding me one of three grants for their inaugural 2012 On-the-Verge Emerging Voices Awards, which was given to encourage writers of diverse cultures. In the fall of 2014 my novel also helped be one of the winners of the inaugural Pitch Fiesta sponsored by the blog, Latin@s in Kids Lit. Hopefully, publishers will see some merit in my novel and my other stories so they can be widely shared.

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