The Balkin Buddies Blog Catherine Balkin's Facebook



I have always written stories, ever

since I learned how to write. My

creative and wacky family, most of

whom are artists, actors, storytellers,

and writers, helped me along. My

childhood was never dull. I grew up in

the oldest house in Princeton , New

Jersey , with three brothers and one

sister. There were also four cousins

who lived with us after their mother

died. Computers weren't invented yet

and we didn't buy a television until I

was eight years old. Most of my

childhood was spent playing Charades,

Hide-and-go-Seek, Monopoly, and

Chess with my siblings and cousins.

We also wrote and performed plays.

My parents read aloud to us every

night. There was a legend that a

Hessian ghost haunted our house.

Hessian soldiers, hired by the British during the Revolutionary War, used our house as an army barracks during The Battle of Princeton. We didn't believe in the ghost, but many people in Princeton told us stories about it. These stories inspired one of my books, The Battlefield Ghost.

Because of my love for stories and children, I wanted to write children's books and edit them. I've been lucky enough to do both. I worked for 21 years as Editor-in-Chief of Holiday House, Inc., a children's book publisher in New York City. I've also worked at the executive level for other publishers, including Henry Holt and Company, Golden Books, and Winslow Press. Recently, I've been directing the trade program at Marshall Cavendish. It allows me to work at home part of the week, and I'm still able to squeeze in some writing time. I live in Princeton , New Jersey , in the same house where I grew up. My husband, John Perkins, and my two sons, Thomas and Timothy, live with me, as do our two cats, Boomerang and Nikki.