BCBA Author Spotlight: Denise Lewis Patrick

As a young girl, Denise Lewis Patrick knew early on that she wanted to write stories. Years later, however, while taking journalism classes in high school, she realized she could actually have a real writing career—and make money. Before then, she had considered being a teacher like many others in her family. She said, “My first real fight with my parents was over my decision to major in just Journalism, and not Journalism Education.” She went on to major in journalism at Northwestern State University of Louisiana, and as a senior, secured an internship with Essence magazine.

After the internship, Patrick held various positions in publishing, including years at Scholastic writing educational material. Her experience at Scholastic piqued her interest in penning her own children’s stories. Red Dancing Shoes, Patrick’s debut book, was published in 1993. It was illustrated by James E. Ransome and received great reviews. She has since written over 30 children’s books, picture, middle-grade, and young adult titles. Two of Patrick’s well-known characters are Cécile and Melody from the American Girl series. In addition to writing, Patrick is an adjunct professor and mentors young aspiring writers.




Through reading, I became an explorer of words and stories.

Denise Lewis Patrick

Sources & Additional Reading: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Image Credit: www.deniselewispatrick.com

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