Tracy Simpson

Published Work: Luminaries: A Children’s Book Anthology

Tracy is a graduate of Institute for Children’s Literature. View Course Catalog >

Welcome to the Winner’s Circle where we celebrate the success of our ICL students. Today we are cheering on Tracy Simpson!

Luminaries-Book-Cover001-2-scaled-1Congratulations on getting published! What’s the name of your book and who’s the publisher?

The name of my book is Luminaries: A Children’s Book Anthology. I wrote and illustrated it.  The publisher is Outskirts Press.  Luminaries is comprised of three stories: “The Battle between the Star Signs and the Kaptorvatons,” “Traveling with Francine and the Fireflies,” and “The Enchanted World of Uniland.”

Tell us a bit about your road to publishing success.

I listen to nature and open up to the universe for inspiration.  I keep a
log of submissions.  I decided to publish with Outskirts Press because I
would like to see “Luminaries” become three animated feature films. 

How long have you been writing?

I wrote my first song at the age of six and wrote poetry in my teens.  I have been writing steadily for seventeen years.

What’s your favorite genre to write for?

My favorite genre is Children’s Literature because the sky is the limit.

What ICL courses have you taken and how did it help with your writing career?

I took Writing for Children and Teens and Breaking into Print. Both of my instructors, Mary Haynes and Roberta Roesch, taught me the skills of the three P’s – Perseverance, Persistance, and Proof Reading. 

Have any of your class assignments been published?

The second story of Luminaries – “Traveling with Francine and the Fireflies” was a class assignment. 

Where is your favorite place to write?

My favorite place to write is in nature.  My best time to write is early morning and at night.

Do you have a favorite writing tip you’d like to share?

My favorite writing tip is to write everyday and let it flow.  Then, rewrite and set it aside.  Look at your work with fresh eyes and rewrite again.

If you could travel back in time and give yourself one piece of
writing advice, how far back would you go, and what would you tell yourself?

I would tell my younger self to keep a dream journal.

Tell us the most valuable part of your experience with ICL.

Writing for Children and Teenagers taught me to let the writing process flow and how to transport myself to other worlds. Breaking into Print taught me the importance of keeping on task.

Why did you choose to become a writer? 

I chose to become a writer because the beauty of a well-written phrase or passage and what it can do for the reader is phenomenal.



Tracy Simpson was born and raised in Austin, Texas. She received an Associate of Arts Degree in Radio-TV-Film from Austin Community College and completed two one-year writing programs at the Long Ridge Writers’ Group and the Institute of Children’s Literature in West Redding, Connecticut. She worked as an actress in Texas for ten years. Tracy also worked as a production assistant, stand-in, voice-over artist, and dancer in film, television, commercials, public service announcements, and music videos. She was also a print and runway model. In addition, she made several vocal performances in and around the Austin area. Tracy writes children’s stories, poetry, screenplays, and songs.

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