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Story Pirates Team With Random House For Virtual Camp Featuring Authors and Illustrators

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Story Pirates Creator Camp

For the month of July, best-selling children's book authors and illustrators will connect directly with hundreds of young people via the Story Pirates Creator Camp. Participating Random House Children's Books authors and illustrators include Mary Pope Osborne (The Magic Tree House series), Nic Stone (Dear Martin, Clean Getaway), Danica McKellar (Goodnight, Numbers), Lincoln Peirce (Max & the Midknights, Big Nate), Vanessa Brantley-Newton (Grandma's Purse, Just Like Me), and Judd Winick (Hilo). During four week-long sessions, kids will also enjoy hours of interactive live-streamed activities hosted by Story Pirates teaching artists. Campers may sign up now at

Creators of the #1 podcast for kids, the Story Pirates saw a summer-specific need for a safe online space where kids can let their imaginations roam free. No idea is too goofy or wild for the Story Pirates. Their expert teaching artists help kids bring their narratives to vivid life through writing and drawing. Already, hundreds of campers are enrolled in the inaugural June sessions, where they're exploring weekly themes like "Heroic Heroes" and "Spy Training." The screen time is broken up by regular intervals for kids to work independently on their own creative projects. Plus, campers are treated to numerous surprises throughout the week. The only supplies needed are common household items like paper, something to draw with, and tape.

During July, campers will also interact with and learn from several best-selling authors and illustrators from the world's largest trade publisher, Random House Children's Books. Each week the featured literary guests (12 in all) will delve into the creative process and take questions from campers. Campers will then be able to download story sparks and related activities to try at home. For even more summer reading fun, book bundles with a curated selection of books by each week's featured authors and illustrators will be included as part of camp registration. Campers who want a more personalized experience may choose to join the optional virtual "cabins" on Zoom where they will interact with other campers and Story Pirates' teaching artists in real time.

Livestreamed programming will be hosted on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 1 pm to 3 pm Eastern Time / 10 am to 1 pm Pacific Time. Each weekly session revolves around a central theme:

  • July 6 - July 10: Illustration Vacation, featuring award-winning authors and illustrators Vanessa Brantley-Newton, Oge Mora, and Lauren Castillo talking about how they blend words and pictures in their books Just Like Me, Our Friend Hedgehog. and The Oldest Student
  • July 13 - July 17: Camp Cartoonist, featuring graphic novelist Judd Winnick sharing how he created the world of Hilo, his beloved middle-grade series. Artists Lincoln Peirce and Lucy Knisley will also discuss their recent works, Max & the Midknights and Stepping Stones.
  • July 20 - July 24: Story Pirates in Space! featuring author Danica McKellar talking about her new book, The Times Machine! Additional special guests this week are The Magnificent Makers series author Theanne Griffith, a brain scientist by day, as well as Dean of the Cornell University College of Arts and Sciences, astrophysicist, and author of Child of the Universe Ray Jayawardhana discussing "Our Cosmic Selves."
  • July 27 - July 31: Time Travel Adventure is the topic of week 4, featuring author Nic Stone talking about her New York Times bestselling middle-grade novel Clean Getaway. Mary Pope Osborne, renowned for her internationally bestselling Magic Tree House series, will be discussing her William Shakespeare focused story Stage Fright on a Summer Night. Finally, fiction and nonfiction author Kate Messner will talk about her new series, History Smashers.

Story Pirates CEO Benjamin Salka is excited to add July's Story Pirates Creator Camp to the growing mix of online content available to kids who may not be able to attend traditional camps this summer. "Fans of Story Pirates, and these amazing authors and illustrators, will find a lot to engage them in July. I'm proud that we're emphasizing the role of visual arts in the story-making process. Drawing helps kids express themselves and bring their stories to life in really creative ways."


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