Barbara (middle) in front of her 'chicken coop clubhouse'
Barbara (left) taking a break from playing in the chicken coop
Barbara Briggs Ward
Barbara Briggs Ward grew up in the country surrounded by relatives and a backdrop made for inspiring a young imagination. Barbara and her cousins were constantly playing in their chicken coop clubhouse filled with the remains of an abandoned one-room schoolhouse. It was in that clubhouse where Barbara read her favorite authors including Louisa May Alcott and Laura Ingalls Wilder - and began writing her own little stories. When Barbara’s grandfather made her "most favorite Christmas present ever" - a simple pine desk with a single drawer which held a pad of lined paper and a #2 pencil - she knew she wanted to be a writer.
Barbara began writing for children. Her first short story was published in Highlights for Children. She is the author/self-taught illustrator of the Snarly Sally picture book series and illustrated “The Brain Reigns” plus “And Then There Was Hope” for the New York State Office of Mental Health.
Barbara's writing took a turn in October, 2010 when she published, "The Reindeer Keeper", an unforgettable story of family and Christmas written for adults and chosen by both Yahoo's Christmas Book Club Group and Yonkers Riverfront Library Book Club as their 2012 December Book of the month. Due to input from readers asking for the storyline to continue, Barbara released “The Snowman Maker” in 2013. The storyline became a trilogy when Barbara released “The Candle Giver” in 2015.
Barbara's articles and short stories have appeared in the Chicken Soup for the Soul book, Christmas Magic; the Chicken Soup for the Soul book, Family Caregivers; Ladies’ Home Journal, The Crafts Report and her short story, “The Great Berry Pie Cook-Off” was a June, 2014 featured work on The Saturday Evening Post website as part of their First Friday Fiction series.
In October, 2017, Barbara released her first work of Amish fiction, "A Robin's Snow." She has been a featured writer on Mountain Lake PBS and at Target Book Festivals in New York and Boston.
Barbara's short fiction, "Sleigh Bells Ring Again", was chosen as 2018 Winner in the Short Fiction Category of the North Country Writers' Annual Writing Contest at Jefferson Community College, Watertown, NY.
© Barbara Briggs Ward