Margaret Peterson Haddix is a reputable American author born on 9th April 1964 in a place between two small towns, Washington Court House and Sabina in Ohio. She came from a family of farmers and book lovers. She remembers that as a kid her mother used to say things like ‘Would you guys stop reading for a minute and look out the window? That’s the Grand Canyon we’re driving past!’ And as history repeats herself, Haddix finds herself saying the same to her children.
Haddix took part in many extra-curricular activities such as singing, acting and running. She played the flute and piccolo and sang with the school choir but all these activities did not interest her much. Haddix always had a deeply profound love for reading and writing. She sought reality in the characters that she read about in books like Harriet the Spy, Rebecca of Sunnybrook farm or the Little Women. However her interest was not only restricted to fiction but also the more important ‘practical’ information. Haddix was very keen on reading the local newspaper, magazines and books of the Great Depression. Though as a kid Haddix wanted a career that was only restricted to books at that time and writing was not thought of a wise career choice. She wanted to be an author. But because she could not be impractical about it, she chose journalism and history as her majors along with creative writing in Miami University. She graduated with a degree of Bachelors of Arts in 1987.
While she was at college, she spent one semester in Luxembourg which gave her time to think about her life and what she really wanted out of it. Every job that she took was in some way related to her actual passion; writing. She worked as a newspaper reporter in Indianapolis, a newspaper copy editor in Fort Wayne and as a freelance writer in Illinois. She was also a community college instructor for a brief time period in Danville, Illinois.
While Haddix was working as a newspaper reporter she got married to Doug, a newspaper editor. When he got a job as a newspaper reporter, Haddix decided to concentrate entirely on writing her fiction because she did not think it was a good idea to work with her husband as his employee. She wrote her first novel ‘Running out of Time’ that was published in 1995. Followed by this were other novels such as ‘Don’t You Dare Read This; Mrs. Dunphrey’ (1996) and ‘Leaving Fishers’ (1997).
Haddix faced her share of rejections in the beginning and it lasted for quite some time. By the time her first two novels got published her first child Meredith was a year and half old. She was also expecting her second child by this time but Haddix used whatever little spare time she had for writing. Her claim to fame was through her books ‘The Missing’ series (2008-2010) and the ‘Shadow Children’ sequence (1998, 2001-2006). Other books authored by her include ‘Just Ella’ (1999), ‘The Girl with 500 Middle Names’ (2001), ‘The House on the Gulf’ (2004). Her most recent works are the ‘The Always War’ published in 2011 and the ‘Game Changer’ (2012).
Haddix currently resides in Columbus, Ohio with her husband and two children. She has been honored with many awards such as the International Reading Association’s Children’s Book Award and Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers notations as well as many state reader’s choice awards.