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Robert San Souci

As a boy Robert D. San Souci was relatively shy; he found that writing was a way to express himself. Now San Souci is the author of numerous books, including award-winning children's books and adult fantasy novels.

San Souci was born in San Francisco and raised across the bay in Berkeley. Reading and writing have always been a part of his life his earliest memories are ones of being read to. "My father had some wonderful books from when he was a child," he recalls. "The Wizard of Oz was one of my favorite stories."

In the second grade San Souci was the class reporter for his school newspaper. Around the same time, he wrote his first book, which his brother Daniel, now an award-winning artist/illustrator. The brothers paired up again years later. Robert says, "I was working in bookstores at the time, writing reviews and some science fiction stories. Meanwhile, Dan was winning awards doing watercolors for local shows. We got together and decided to do a children's book."

Many of Robert's ideas for his books come from reading and researching in the library. His own personal library contains several thousand volumes. He also finds inspiration by traveling and keeping his eyes open. "I love to travel by bus. I can sit and stare out the window and simply observe." And sometimes he just wanders around and listens to people talking. "I love to listen for the flow and rhythm of the language that different people use."

Because San Souci has always loved folklore, he now mines the wealth of oral tradition from around the world and brings it to life in dramatic stories for children.

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