THRILL IN THE 'VILLE
I grew up in a storytelling family in the hill country of eastern Tennessee. My sisters and I spent lots of time outdoors gardening or camping. Indoors, the entire family often was eating or doing chores. Someone was always talking. The talking usually led to laughter (or arguments). I learned to love the power of words and the way that stories connect people.
Sometime around third grade, I began putting stories on paper in the form of short, silly messages for homemade birthday cards or Christmas gifts. As a teenager, I became fascinated by journalism and served as a high school correspondent for the Kingsport (TN) Times-News. That led to all sorts of new possibilities, and I eventually became director of news and editor of a magazine at Emory & Henry College in Virginia and then news director at Centre College in Kentucky. There have been other jobs - at a camp in the Smoky Mountains, in the Virginia General Assembly, and in a counseling office where I helped college students find their dream jobs. But mostly, I have been a writer.
Now (when I'm not laughing, talking, or eating with my husband and twin daughters), I spend most of my time writing books for young readers, doing book talks, and visiting schools.
Now that you have learned about my family, you should know that the B in my name stands for Barnes. So if you meet someone named Barnes from Tennessee, don't be surprised if that person likes to talk, laugh, and eat.
B.A. In political science, Emory & Henry College
M.A. In counseling, Appalachian State University
M.F.A. In writing for children and young adults, Spalding University
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