TTLG Author/Illustrator Profiles

Garret Freymann-Weyr

Garret Freymann-Weyr

Garret Freymann-Weyr was born Garret Weyr in New York City, where she grew up, with three sisters and two parents. Garret meant to become a lawyer, but it just didn't work out. Actually it was her mother who thought she should become a lawyer; her father thought she could pursue her vague ideas about becoming a ballerina or an actress, as long as she could type.

In the sixth grade, she wrote a series of short stories about a girl named Charlie, whose father was a diplomat, but the idea of becoming a writer was most unappealing. Her parents had friends who were writers --one of them rode her horse into the lobby on a Sunday morning, much to the distress of the doormen.While none of the others were quite as exciting, they were all very odd.

In college, Garret took a writing course with Doris Betts and discovered that whatever she might think about writers, writing itself was really fun and interesting. She wrote a novel for grown-ups which was published right after her college graduation, then spent eight years holding down a series of ridiculous jobs from artist's model to assistant at a foundation.? During a brief stint working for the children's book department of a major publishing house, she did two things: swore at the copying machine and read the backlist.

That's when it occured to her that there was a place for her in the world which didn?t involve holding a pose for two hours. Or typing someone else's letters.

"There's something elastic about younger characters. Because they are figuring things out, they demand from their writers a level of attention to detail on everything from nail polish to math homework to "Why Am I Here?" Capturing a voice that can go from the age of nine to the age of thirty in the span of ten seconds is a challenge I never quite meet, but aim for every day. It's a little like walking a tightrope and rather explains why someone with this job might ride a horse into a city lobby.

Garret changed her last name to Freymann-Weyr when she married her husband, who also changed his last name to Freymann-Weyr. In addition to being her first reader, he works for National Public Radio, and they live just outside of Washington, D.C.