Marcy Campbell writes for both children and adults. Her debut picture book, “Adrian Simcox Does NOT Have a Horse,” illustrated by Corinna Luyken, is forthcoming from Penguin in August 2018. Marcy grew up on a dairy farm in Illinois with cows, chickens, cats and dogs, but no horses.
She has published many short stories, essays, and humor pieces for adults in literary journals and magazines, including Salon, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, and The McSweeneys Internet Tendency. Her essay in Salon, on creativity, provides more detail into her youth and development as an artist.
Unlike many authors, Marcy did not grow up in a book-filled home, but she wanted books so badly, they became, and remain, some of her most coveted things. Her parents did purchase a set of encyclopedias, however, and she spent many rainy afternoons reading them. She did not have a public library card, and her little school had only a makeshift library in a conference room. Too quiet and anxious to browse very long or ask for suggestions, she kept checking out the same book, over and over, until her signature filled every line, front and back, of the little paper card in the envelope.
The book was “The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Once she became an adult, Marcy bought her own illustrated hardcover of that book, so she no longer needs to borrow it from the library! Today, she finds libraries to be the most magical of places and is quite at home in them, dividing her writing time between a college library just down the street and her own closet-office. When she travels, she loves to check out the library and bookstores of the town she’s visiting.
In her former professional life, Marcy worked in public relations, serving clients ranging from robot manufacturers to watershed districts. She can still crank out a press release in her sleep. As a teen, she had many jobs that she didn’t keep very long, including waitressing, telemarketing, cleaning dog cages, scooping ice-cream (free samples!), and working at a clothing store where she once spent the afternoon in the window pretending to be a mannequin. Through it all, she had a passion for story-telling, and she kept writing whatever idea came into her head in whatever form that idea wanted to take, publishing here and there, until one amazing day, when her picture book manuscript was plucked from the slush pile of agent Steven Malk, and everything changed.
Marcy lives in northeastern Ohio with her husband, children, a rescue dog named Turtle, and two formerly stray cats, one of which she found picking through the garbage at the little league baseball diamond. Marcy has a great love of animals and has a high degree of suspicion of people who don’t. She also loves soft pajamas, a bed full of pillows, and a fresh stack of books, preferably combined. She adores coffee and chocolate, also, ideally, combined.
She is currently at work on a middle-grade novel and a number of picture books. When she’s not writing or reading, she enjoys long hikes in the woods. She gets some of her best ideas out there, and also in the shower, but a long hike is much more ecologically responsible than a long shower. You can read more about Marcy’s books here or contact her here if you have a question or want to find out more scintillating details about her life.