ABOUT RUTH MCNALLY BARSHAW
I am a writer-illustrator. After working 25 years as a graphic designer and illustrator in advertising, I decided in 2002 to try my luck at writing and illustrating children’s books. I submitted a few picturebook dummies to a few editors, and got personal rejections with invitations to send more, but I knew there was something missing from my work. I took classes, dissected successful books, and studied the field full time (without a paycheck).In Fall ’04 I drove 2 hours to see Tomie dePaola at a bookstore in my state. He urged me to go to New York, to the upcoming national SCBWI Conference. I attended with a sketchbook, and when I came home (Feb 2005) I put my whole sketchbook on my website.Writer and illustrator friends urged me to create a book in my sketchbook style, and that’s how Ellie McDoodle was born.An agent contacted me, and she sold it to the wonderful Bloomsbury. The first book came out in 2007, the second in 2008, the third in 2010, fourth in 2012, fifth and sixth in 2013 and 2014. Ellie is sold in 8 languages.
Book 7: Leopold is Lost, with Sleeping Bear Press, written by Denise Brennan-Nelson and illustrated by me.
Next up: Several picturebooks in the works, written and illustrated by me.My life is a Cinderella story — which makes SCBWI my fairy godmother. ;)
My favorite books convey both humor and heart. That’s my goal for my own books and also for my art.