Award-winning nonfiction author Kelly Milner Halls uses memories from her childhood to write books for young readers. “The freedom I had to explore miles of undeveloped wooded acres and everything that thrived in those woods gave birth to every book I’ve ever written,” she says. Her experiences between the ages of nine and twelve were “the happiest, most joyful, discovery ridden” of her life.
She recalls gathering what she thought was an abandoned spider egg, placing it in a jelly jar with holes punched in the metal lid, and waiting for it to hatch. Every day, Halls watched and waited. “One day when I was all but convinced it would never hatch, I saw something move from inside the egg.” To her surprise, the egg yielded a single lizard rather than dozens of spiders. “I got to watch it take its first breath of air, its first steps inside the jar. I watched it scamper away when I set it free where I’d found it months before…I remember the wonder I felt, the magic—like it was yesterday.” More…
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