Ashley Walker is a children’s book author with a confession: she didn’t read much as a kid. Instead, she climbed trees, chased butterflies, and dreamed of flying to the moon. Ashley pursued her ambition to become an astronaut all the way through college, but at the end of her undergraduate work, she gazed (no, squinted) up at her engineering degree to see that she’d become too near-sighted to pilot a spaceship to far-flung places. So, Ashley flew (coach) to grad school and began a career in robotics. She was determined to launch something, if not herself!
But that’s when she discovered the wondrous, unexplored worlds all around her — right there in a robotics lab on Earth. Imagine virtually steering around an old-growth forest using bat-like sonar and following the haunting songs of humpbacks in an ocean migration. So began Ashley’s fascination with perception — an interest that she pursued through writing code and then through writing stories with strong scientific themes.
Ashley recently earned an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts, where she received the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Norma Fox Mazer awards for fiction and the Critical Thesis Scholarship. Ashley hopes that her work will inspire young people to find their place in the natural world… and protect it. Ashley is repped by Kelly Dyksterhouse.
Favorite Quote: “The story — from Rumpelstiltskin to War and Peace — is one of the basic tools invented by the mind. … There have been great societies that did not use the wheel, but there have been no societies that did not tell stories.” —Ursula K. Le Guin