Gary Paulsen is the author of many critically acclaimed books for young people, including three Newbery Honor books, The Winter Room, Hatchet, and Dogsong. He has published fiction and nonfiction for adults as well as a number of picture books illustrated by his wife, the painter Ruth Wright Paulsen. Gary was a self-confessed poor student and reluctant reader when he was in school. He credits the kindness of a public librarian with, literally, saving his life by taking an active interest in him and urging him to read and discuss the books she gave to him. He claims that every good thing in his life can be attributed to that one woman who opened his eyes and his world to books. Several years ago, while he was doing research on a planned biography of Sally Hemmings, his studies led him to accounts of the life-threatening struggle that slaves faced in becoming literate. His novel Nightjohn was inspired by and written in honor of those men and women who risked life and limb to teach others how to read and write, putting their lives on the line in order to give others the freedom that literacy promises.Paulsen, Gary is the author of 'Shelf Life Stories by the Book', published 2003 under ISBN 9780689841804 and ISBN 0689841809.