Shelley Pearsall grew up in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio called Parma which was known for its pink flamingo lawn ornaments and white socks. Her family did not own a pink flamingo lawn ornament or wear white socks, but they did have an unusual daughter who liked to sit in her bedroom closet and write stories.
Most of Shelley’s first stories were only a few pages long. They were handwritten with construction paper covers and stapled bindings. As Shelley got older, the stories got longer. She wrote mysteries, adventure stories, historical stories – and a LOT of unfinished stories.
Since she’d never met any professional authors, Shelley didn’t know how to become one. (This is a big reason why she visits schools to meet with young writers today!) So, she kept on writing and tried out a lot of other careers instead. Her oddest jobs included working in a shoemaker shop in Colonial Williamsburg and being a recycling character called “Tin Can Tilly.”
Over the past twenty years, Shelley has been a classroom teacher in public schools, as well as working in the education departments of several parks and history museums. She has a B.A. from The College of Wooster and M.Ed. from John Carroll University.
Shelley’s first book, Trouble Don't Last, was published in 2002 and received the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction. Her third novel, All of the Above, was an ALA Notable book. Her books often appear on state reading award lists and “best of” lists.
Today, Shelley lives with her husband Mike and cat Charlie in Silver Lake, Ohio which used to be an amusement park a hundred or so years ago (see cool postcards!). When she isn’t working on a book, Shelley likes to read, swim, play laser tag with her cat, and imagine where she’d put a pink flamingo if she had one.