Anica Mrose Rissi is the award-winning author of more than a dozen books for kids and teens, including picture books, chapter books, middle grade, and YA. Her essays have been published by The Writer and the New York Times, and she plays fiddle in and writes lyrics for the band Owen Lake and the Tragic Loves.

Honors include the Maine Literary Award, the Paterson Prize for Books for Young People, YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers, Horn Book Fanfare Best Books of the Year, CCBC Choices best-of-the-year list, Bank Street Best Children’s Books of the Year, Texas Library Association’s Tayshas Reading List and 2×2 Reading List, New Jersey State Council on the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship Finalist, multiple foreign translations and starred reviews, and Junior Library Guild Selection.

Rissi grew up on an island off the coast of Maine and spent many years in New York City, where she worked as an executive editor in children’s book publishing. She currently lives in central New Jersey with her very good dog, Sweet Potato. Find out more at


BA – American Studies | Yale

[pronunciation: uh-NEE-kuh MROHSS (one syllable; rhymes with “gross”) REE-see]

Selected work

An Na

Faculty, MFA in WCYA; Writing Novels for Young People Retreat

Anica Mrose Rissi

Faculty, MFA in WCYA

Corey Ann Haydu

Faculty, MFA in WCYA

Matt Phelan

Faculty, MFA in WCYA

Erica S. Perl

Faculty, MFA in WCYA

Alex Sanchez

Faculty, MFA in WCYA