Mark Siegel

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Mark Siegel
Author, artist, and editor Mark Siegel, 2021.jpg
BornAnn Arbor, Michigan
NationalityAmerican & French
Area(s)Writer, Artist, Editor
Notable works
"5 Worlds"

"Sailor Twain, or the Mermaid in the Hudson"
"To Dance"
"Tiny Dancer"
"Oskar and the Eight Blessings"

"Long Night Moon"

Mark Siegel (born June 2, 1967 in Ann Arbor, Michigan[1]) is known both as an author, illustrator, and as the editorial director of First Second Books, a Macmillan imprint which publishes graphic novels for all ages.[2] He grew up in France until the age of 18, after which he moved back to the United States where he presently lives.


Published works[edit]

His books in print to date include Seadogs, An Epic Ocean Operetta (on a script by children's author Lisa Wheeler),[3] Long Night Moon (on a script by author Cynthia Rylant),[4] To Dance (on a script by his wife Siena Cherson Siegel),[5] Moving House,[6] his first picture book as author and illustrator.

He also illustrated Oskar and the Eight Blessings (on a script by Tanya and Richard Simon),[7] winner of the 2015 National Jewish Book Award for Children's Literature;[8] and How to Read a Story[9] (on a script by Kate Messner.)

Siegel is the author of the graphic novel for adults Sailor Twain, or the Mermaid in the Hudson (2012), which was serialized online starting in 2010, a New York Times Bestseller.[10] A 10th Anniversary edition of Sailor Twain[11] was published in 2022, in a larger format and with additional back matter on the making of the work.

In 2017, Siegel launched the 5 Worlds graphic novel series,[12] a five-volume science fiction story co-written with his brother Alexis Siegel, and illustrated with Matt Rockefeller, Xanthe Bouma, and Boya Sun.

  • Book one: The Sand Warrior (2017)[13]
  • Book two: The Cobalt Prince (2018)[14]
  • Book three: The Red Maze (2019)[15]
  • Book four: The Amber Anthem (2020)[16]
  • Book five: The Emerald Gate (2022)[17]

In 2020, he and Kate Messner released a sequel to their picture book How to Read a Story, called How to Write a Story.[18]

In 2022, another collaboration with his wife Siena Cherson Siegel came out, the graphic novel memoir for young adults Tiny Dancer[19].

First Second Books, graphic novel publisher[edit]

Siegel is also the founder and Editorial & Creative Director of First Second Books, a Macmillan publisher of graphic novels for all ages. First Second publishes works by many acclaimed authors and artists, including Ben Hatke,[20] Gene Luen Yang,[21] Jillian Tamaki,[22] Vera Brosgol, Jen Wang, Shannon Hale, LeUyen Pham, and the legendary Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki.[23]

In 2006, First Second published American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang,[2] the first graphic novel ever nominated for a National Book Award,[24] and the first ever to win the American Library Association's Edward L. Printz Award.[25][26]

In 2015, First Second published This One Summer by the cousins Jillian and Mariko Tamaki, the first book in any format ever nominated as a finalist for both the American Library Association's Randolph Caldecott Award, and the American Library Association's Edward L. Printz Award.[27]

Some of First Second's biggest hits include The Adventure Zone graphic novel series, the InvestiGators series, and the Real Friends trilogy. First Second also publishes graphic non-fiction for young readers including the Science Comics and History Comics collections, and for adults, including the World Citizen Comics, a line of civics graphic books, and biographical works such as The Accidental Czar.

Lectures and workshops[edit]

Siegel has given lectures and workshops around North America, for authors, artists, librarians, students, executives in many venues, at trade shows, companies, Comic Cons, and animation studios, including Blue Sky, DreamWorks, Disney, and Pixar.[1]


  • In 2006, Siegel won the Texas Bluebonnet Award for Seadogs, An Epic Ocean Operetta, written by Lisa Wheeler.[28]
  • In 2007, Siegel and his wife, Siena Cherson Siegel, won a Sibert Honor for To Dance: A Ballerina's Graphic Novel.[29]
  • In 2015, Siegel and co-authors Tanya and Richard Simon won the Jewish National Book Award for Oskar and the Eight Blessings.[8]
  • In 2017, the New York Public Library selected 5 Worlds: The Sand Warrior in its Top Ten Best Books for Kids of 2017.[30]


  1. ^ a b "Mark Siegel". Macmillan Speakers Bureau. Retrieved April 14, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "It's Time for First Second". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  3. ^ Wheeler, Lisa (February 2004). Seadogs, An Epic Ocean Operetta (review). Publishers Weekly. ISBN 978-0-689-85689-1.
  4. ^ Rylant, Cynthia (December 2004). Long Night Moon (Review). Publishers Weekly. ISBN 978-0-689-85426-2.
  5. ^ Siegel, Siena Cherson (October 2006). To Dance, A Ballerina's Graphic Novel (Review). Publishers Weekly. ISBN 978-0-689-86747-7.
  6. ^ Children's Book Review: Moving House. Publishers Weekly. September 1, 2011. ISBN 978-1-59643-635-0.
  7. ^ Simon, Richard; Simon, Tanya (September 8, 2015). Oskar and the Eight Blessings (Review). MacMillan Press. ISBN 9781596439498.
  8. ^ a b "Past Winners | Jewish Book Council". Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  9. ^ "How to Read a Story". Chronicle Books. Retrieved October 16, 2022.
  10. ^ "Hardcover Graphic Books – Best Sellers". The New York Times. November 4, 2012. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  11. ^ "Sailor Twain Or: The Mermaid in the Hudson, 10th Anniversary Edition". Macmillan. Retrieved October 16, 2022.
  12. ^ 5 Worlds Book 1: The Sand Warrior by Mark Siegel, Alexis Siegel. Penguin Random House. 2017. ISBN 9781101935866.
  13. ^ Siegel, Mark; Siegel, Alexis (May 2, 2017). 5 Worlds Book 1: The Sand Warrior. Penguin Random house. ISBN 9781101935866.
  14. ^ Siegel, Mark; Siegel, Alexis (May 8, 2018). 5 Worlds Book 2: The Cobalt Prince. Penguin Random house. ISBN 9781101935897.
  15. ^ Siegel, Mark; Siegel, Alexis (May 7, 2019). 5 Worlds Book 3: The Red Maze. Penguin Random House. ISBN 9781101935927.
  16. ^ Siegel, Mark; Siegel, Alexis (May 12, 2020). 5 Worlds Book 4: The Amber Anthem. Penguin Random house. ISBN 9780593120552.
  17. ^ Siegel, Mark; Siegel, Alexis (January 18, 2022). 5 Worlds Book 5: The Emerald Gate. Penguin Random house. ISBN 9780593120606.
  18. ^ "How to Write a Story". Chronicle Books. Retrieved October 16, 2022.
  19. ^ Tiny Dancer. November 2, 2021. ISBN 978-1-4814-8666-8.
  20. ^ Bauer, Caitlin. "01 Creators". First Second Books. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  21. ^ Bauer, Caitlin. "01 Creators". First Second Books. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  22. ^ "This One Summer (Review)". McMillan Publishing. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  23. ^ September 13, Christian Holub; EDT, 2022 at 12:00 PM. "See how Hayao Miyazaki's graphic novel 'Shuna's Journey' foreshadowed his classic films". Retrieved October 16, 2022.
  24. ^ MacDonald, Heidi (January 23, 2007). "Syndicated Comics". The Beat. Retrieved October 16, 2022.
  25. ^ YALSA, Michael L. Printz Winners and Honor Books.
  26. ^ George Gene Gustines, Library of Congress Anoints Graphic Novelist as Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, The New York Times, January 4, 2016.
  27. ^ Cavna, Michael (February 2, 2015). "CALDECOTT, PRINTZ HONORS: 'This One Summer' co-authors 'grateful' for graphic-novel milestone as Honor Book". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved April 14, 2018.
  28. ^ Texas Bluebonnet Award Winners
  29. ^ Robert F. Sibert Medal and Honor Books, 2001–present
  30. ^ "Best Books for Kids 2017: 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing". The New York Public Library. Retrieved April 14, 2018.

External links[edit]

Media related to Mark Siegel at Wikimedia Commons