Kate DiCamillo

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Kate DiCamillo
Kate dicamillo 2767.JPG
DiCamillo at the 2014 National Book Festival
Born Katrina Elizabeth DiCamillo
(1964-03-25) March 25, 1964 (age 51)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Occupation Writer
Nationality American
Genre Children's fiction
Notable works
Notable awards Newbery Medal
2004, 2014
National Ambassador for Young People's Literature

Katrina Elizabeth "Kate" DiCamillo (born March 25, 1964) is an American writer of children's fiction for all reading levels, usually featuring animals. Her 2003 novel The Tale of Despereaux and 2013 novel Flora and Ulysses each won the annual Newbery Medal recognizing the year's "most distinguished contribution to American literature for children." Because of Winn-Dixie was a runner-up (Newbery Honor Book) in 2000. DiCamillo is also known for the Mercy Watson series of picture books, illustrated by Chris Van Dusen.

DiCamillo was named the National Ambassador for Young People's Literature by the Library of Congress for the term 2014-2015.[1][2][3]


Born in Philadelphia, DiCamillo suffered from chronic pneumonia. At age five, she moved to Clermont, Florida for her health (warmer climate) with her mother and her older brother Curt DiCamillo, who would become a noted architectural historian. Her mother was a teacher. Her father remained in Pennsylvania to sell his orthodontic practice and never rejoined the family in Florida.[4][5]

DiCamillo earned her college degree in English at the University of Florida in 1987 and worked in Florida after graduation. At age 30 she moved to Minneapolis and began working at a book warehouse. That job inspired her to write for children and allowed her to meet a sales representative for Candlewick Press, resulting in submission of a draft that would become Because of Winn-Dixie.[4]

Her 2003 novel The Tale of Despereaux was inspired by a friend's son, Luke Bailey, who asked her to write about an unlikely hero with "exceptionally large ears".[6]


In 2005, Because of Winn-Dixie was released as a film by 20th Century Fox. Universal Pictures released The Tale of Despereaux on December 19, 2008.[7] The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane was optioned by New Line Cinema and is in early pre-production.[citation needed] 20th Century Fox has hired Martin Hynes to write a script based on the book, The Magician's Elephant.[8]




Chapter books[edit]

  • Bink & Gollie series, text by DiCamillo and Alison McGhee, illus. Tony Fucile
    • Bink & Gollie (2010)
    • Bink & Gollie: Two for One (2012)
  • Mercy Watson series (Candlewick Press), text by Kate DiCamillo, illus. Chris Van Dusen
    • Mercy Watson to the Rescue (2005)
    • Mercy Watson Fights Crime (2006)
    • Mercy Watson Goes for a Ride (2006)
    • Mercy Watson: Princess in Disguise (2007)
    • Mercy Watson Thinks Like a Pig (2008)
    • Mercy Watson: Something Wonky This Way Comes (2009)

Picture books[edit]

  • Great Joy (2007), illus. Bagram Ibatoulline
  • Louise, the Adventures of a Chicken (2008), illus. Harry Bliss

Short stories[edit]

  • "The Third Floor Bedroom", in Chris Van Allsburg, et al., The Chronicles of Harris Burdick: Fourteen Amazing Authors Tell the Tales (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2011)[10][11]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Julie Bosman (January 2, 2014). "Newbery Winner to Promote Her Genre". New York Times. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  2. ^ Sue Corbett (January 2, 2014). "Kate DiCamillo Named Next National Ambassador for Young People's Literature". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  3. ^ Monica Hesse (January 2, 2014). "Kate DiCamillo, author of ‘Because of Winn Dixie,’ named children’s literature ambassador". Washington Post. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Margolies, Jane (2006-02-21). "Pleasantly Stunned, a Star Children's Author Hits the Tour Trail Again". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-07.
  5. ^ "Ninth Book of Junior Authors & Illustrators Sample Profile: Kate DeCamillo". Wilsonbiographies.com. Retrieved 2009-12-10. [dead link]
  6. ^ Blais, Jacqueline (2004-01-14). "Author's Newbery is no small thrill". USA TODAY.
  7. ^ The Tale of Desperaux (film). Universal Studios Entertainment.
  8. ^ (Factiva).[dead link]
  9. ^ "DiCamillo, Kate". Library of Congress Authorities. Retrieved 2012-04-13.
    This is a point of entry to LC Online Catalog entries for books by Kate DiCamillo.
  10. ^ "Kate DiCamillo and Chris Van Allsburg will discuss The Chronicles of Harris Burdick at the Fitzgerald". Laurie Hertzel. Updated October 29, 2011. THE BOOKMARK: The latest from the local scene. [Minneapolis] StarTribune. Retrieved 2012-04-13.
  11. ^ "The Chronicles of Harris Burdick: Fourteen Amazing Authors Tell the Tales". goodreads. Retrieved 2012-04-13.
  12. ^ "National Book Awards – 2001". National Book Foundation. Retrieved 2012-04-13.
  13. ^ "Guardian children's fiction award shortlist 2014". Emily Drabble. The Guardian. 4 October 2014. Retrieved 2015-01-21.

External links[edit]