WCYA faculty member Varian Johnson was the Young Adult Literature Honoree at this month’s Austin Book Awards event hosted by The Library Foundation in Austin, Texas.
The Library Foundation supports the Austin Public Library by increasing public awareness about the library and its importance to the community, and enhancing library collections, programs, and facilities, and the proceeds from the event provide free writing workshops at Austin Public Library and youth scholarships for their Badgerdog Creative Writing Summer Camp. For more information about the Austin Book Awards and other events hosted by The Library Foundation, visit their website.
Varian Johnson is the author of nine novels, including the Jackson Greene middle-grade series. The first novel in the series, The Great Greene Heist, received two starred reviews and was named an ALA Notable Children’s Book Selection, a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year, and a Texas Library Association Lonestar List selection. In addition, Varian has written for the Spirit Animals: Fall of the Beasts middle-grade fantasy series as well as novels and short stories for YA audiences. Varian’s newest novel, The Parker Inheritance, has received four starred reviews and was named a Junior Library Guild selection and a Spring 2018 Kids’ Indie Next List pick among other accolades. To hear more about Varian’s inspiration for The Parker Inheritance, you can listen to this Scholastic Reads podcast. Varian was born in Florence, South Carolina, and attended the University of Oklahoma, where he received a BS in Civil Engineering. He graduated from the MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2009. He lives outside of Austin, TX with his family.
Varian has been a faculty member in the program since July 2017.