Cover of The Last Tsar's Dragons by Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple

The Last Tsar’s Dragons

So, I got an email asking for a short story for a new dragon anthology and thought: I am SO done with dragons. But no sooner had I said that aloud, then my traitor mind responded: “The tsar’s dragons were harrowing the suburbs again.” The next three or four sentences spun out quickly.

Cover of How to Fracture a Fairy Tale

How to Fracture a Fairy Tale

I was in my final year of college when the Rocky and Bullwinkle fractured fairy tale show was on so never watched it. (And my dorm had no tv.) The next year, living in New York City in 1960, working as an editor, again no television. By 1962 I was selling my own picture books and as far as I knew, invented my own kind of fractured fairy tales.

Crow Not Crow

The Yolen-Stemples are a family of birdwatchers. (I must admit I am the least of them.having been a city girl the first fourteen years of my life.) My late husband David Stemple grew up in the mountains of West Virginia. And our three children began early, because David (“Pa” in OWL MOON) taught them how to bird.

Cover of Finding Baba Yaga by Jane Yolen

Finding Baba Yaga

This verse novel began as a bunch of different poems about Baba Yaga,my culture hero. I’d read a bit of a blog in which the author purports to be Baba Yaga as a love columnist. The columns were particularly snarky and strong. So I wrote a poem about Baba Yaga as a love columnist and then branched out into writing poems about her in general: having tea with Kostchai the Deathless, (When he kisses the Baba on the cheek, “it leaves a scar.”) or how she feels about her cousin the witch from Hansel in Gretel.

Cover of Fly with Me by Jane Yolen, Adam Stemple, Heidit Stemple, and Jason Stemple

Fly With Me: National Geographic Book of Birds

This is the second book that my three children and I have done for National Geographic, the first being ANIMAL STORIES.

NG asked us to do the first book, we pitched the second. I made a rough outline and once NG gave us a contract for the book, we divided up who would do which sections.

Cover of Mapping the Bones by Jane Yolen

Mapping the Bones

My third and last (I swear) Holocaust novel, hung on the armature of Hansel and Gretel, about twins Chaim & Gittel who are 14 when the Holocaust begins and they and their parents are moved from a lovely cozy house with a front and back yard

Cover of Monster Academy by Jane Yolen and Heidi E Y Stemple

Monster Academy

It took Heidi and me close to fifteen years till this book finally came out. I tried it as a picture book, a middle grade novel, an easy-reader. When Heidi signed on and we did it together as a picture book (MUCH better than my first feeble attempt) we actually had a book. Scholastic bought it and put the very inventive John McKinley