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Erin Soderberg Downing - Children’s, Middle Grade, YA, Adult Fiction

erin soderberg downing

Erin Soderberg Downing has written more than one hundred books for kids, tweens, and young adults, including several series for young readers: The Great Peach Experiment (a Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection), Puppy Pirates, The Quirks, and Disney’s Daring Dreamers Club. She has also published many other novels for middle-grade readers, including Moon Shadow and Controlled Burn (coming November 2022). Erin’s favorite hobbies are reading, swimming, baking, exploring the woods, traveling with her family, and walking around Minneapolis lakes with her fluffy and mischievous dogs, Wally and Nutmeg.

Erin loves creating stories for kids that are accessible and help create a lifelong love of reading for fun. Before becoming an author, Erin was a children’s book editor, a cookie inventor, and also worked for Nickelodeon. She graduated summa cum laude from the University of Minnesota, earned her MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business, and has thrice been awarded a Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative grant. One of Erin’s passions as an author is inspiring kids to read and write during her frequent in-person and virtual school visits with kids across the country. More information can be found at


Making of a Series
Erin Soderberg Downing has created four successful children’s book series: The Great Peach Experiment, Disney’s Daring Dreamers Club, Puppy Pirates, and The Quirks (as well as several work-for-hire series about other peoples’ characters!). During this session, she will share her process, her sources of inspiration, and some stories about how she gets from raw idea to a finished novel. She’ll also share lots of tips for how to create characters that readers will want to spend more time with, ways to plan your writing if you think your book might eventually turn into a series, and how she plans future adventures and story arcs while still writing the first book in a series. There will be some time for writing/idea generation. Be sure to bring your questions!

Getting from Here to There: A Road Map to Productivity 
Are you stuck or can’t get started? Don’t ever seem to find time to put words on paper? Does writing always seem to be the last thing you have time to do? In this session, author Erin Soderberg Downing (mom to three humans and two dogs, and the author of over one hundred books for kids) will share some of the tricks she uses to carve out time to write and keep herself motivated when sometimes (most of the time) she’d much rather sit in bed with a glass of wine and watch TV. Be prepared to spend some time writing out ideas that will get you excited to move forward, and brainstorming ways to carve out a little more time in your schedule. Bring lots of questions!

Ask Me Anything!
A former children’s book editor and marketer for Scholastic, Erin Soderberg Downing has written more than 100 books for kids, tweens, teens (and a few for adults), ranging from work-for-hire movie novelizations and Scooby-Doo mysteries to funny chapter book series and heartfelt middle-grade novels to adult romantic comedies and edgy teen romance. Erin has worked with every major children’s book publisher (except Harper Collins), she has self-published 3 novels, and has edited numerous NYT Bestselling authors. Come to this session where she will share her winding path to becoming a published author, then leave lots of time for you to ask her ANYTHING about children’s publishing, writing books kids love, agent questions, the editorial process, the truth about revision, etc. Much of this session will be structured as an open Q&A and discussion (with lots of tips, tricks, and advice) that will combine brutal honesty, helpful encouragement, and plenty of time for conversation.