Cornelia Maude Spelman, MSW, was a therapist with children and families before turning full-time to writing and art, and she’s written eleven books for children that help them manage emotion and difficult life situations. Her “The Way I Feel” series of books for young children– described by reviewers as “sensitive” and “compassionate” –have sold over a million copies and been translated into Chinese, Korean, Spanish, Greek, Japanese, German, Arabic, and Danish. Her latest picture book, Everybody’s Somewhere, invites young readers to think about where others are in our world, what they might be doing, and our connections to one another. (Photo, above, at Cleveland Children’s Museum exhibit, “I Feel,” featuring her books.)
Cornelia’s memoir about her mother and the emotional legacies in her family, Missing (Northwestern University Press) has been called “memoir writing at its absolute finest” (Alex Kotlowitz, author, There Are No Children Here).
Cornelia has earned awards from the Illinois Arts Council, was a finalist for the Penelope Niven Creative Nonfiction award from Salem College, and was awarded the Bernard De Voto Fellowship in Nonfiction at Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.
Valuing emotional awareness and management, healthy relationships, and the preservation of personal histories–especially those of women and girls, through diaries and personal papers, Cornelia has been keeping a daily diary for thirty-seven years, and is currently writing Volume 220. They are archived at the Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America at Harvard University http://www.radcliffe.edu/schlesinger_library.aspx .
Hear an interview with Cornelia about the importance of emotion: http://albertwhitman.wordpress.com/2010/10/20/awc-podcast-series-cornelia-maude-spelman/
A mother and grandmother, Cornelia lives with her husband, a writer and professor, just outside Chicago.