McDonald, Megan
Born: February 28, 1959, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Vocations: Children’s Book Author, Librarian
Geographic Connection to Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh, Allegheny County; Latrobe, Westmoreland County
Keywords: American Library Association Notable Children’s Book; Judy Blume Award for Contemporary Fiction; Judy Moody; Oberlin College; Reading Rainbow; University of Pittsburgh
Abstract: Megan McDonald was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on February 28, 1959. Influenced largely by her upbringing in a family of five girls, Megan McDonald has become a popular children’s author. Most famous for the Judy Moody series, McDonald has published 25 children’s books as well as books for young adults. The author now resides in Sebastopol, California with her husband.
Megan McDonald was born on February 28, 1959, to John and Mary Louise McDonald of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The youngest of five sisters, McDonald often had difficulty getting a word in edgewise at the dinner table. Because of her inability to express herself amidst her older siblings, McDonald’s mother gave her a notebook to write her thoughts down in. This experience, along with the author’s vivid imagination as a child, became the foundation for the young girl’s later career as a children’s author. McDonald and her sisters shared a love of reading from very early on in life. Exposed to many different authors, genres, and styles, the author said in her biography in Something About the Author, “Before I was a writer, I was a reader.” McDonald wrote her first story about a pencil sharpener in elementary school. The story was told from a first person’s point of view. As McDonald said in Something About the Author, the story simply, “detailed a life of eating pencil shavings all day.” However, this experience was important to the author as it made her realize the importance of having her own voice in her writing. McDonald’s pencil sharpener story became her first published work at age ten in her school’s newspaper. As an adult, the author firmly believes that any idea can be turned into a story. Another influential moment in McDonald’s life was meeting Katherine Paterson, McDonald’s hero and author of one of her favorite books, Bridge to Terabithia. This experience largely persuaded McDonald to pursue writing as a career.

  • Megan McDonald has written 62 books! Zowee!
  • She starts every book by scribbling on a napkin.
  • Megan has 4 older sisters.
  • She owns the World's Biggest Jawbreaker. No lie!
  • Megan collects sock monkeys, not scabs!
  • She never leaves home without a book.
  • Her favorite color is Purple!
  • She lived near Screamin' Mimi's in California.
  • Her favorite book as a kid: Harriet the Spy.
  • The first story she wrote was about a pencil sharpener.