Lindsey Stoddard

children’s book author, born and raised in Vermont; graduated college and moved to New York City; taught middle school English for ten years; received her MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts; loves reading and writing with middle schoolers, hiking on the Appalachian Trail, and Ben and Jerry’s ice cream


The earliest thing I can remember is dirt jammed beneath my fingernails.

My Mom studies the brain, so I know about childhood amnesia. It means we can’t remember anything before the age of three or four. That’s a fact because when I close my eyes and play memory games—Mom gives me a word and I try to connect it to moments I remember as far back ad I can go—the earliest I can ever come up with is the dirt. Everything before that, before I was three, is just a big who-knows.

The dirt jammed under my fingernails when I was three felt good, though. Like it was supposed to be there and I wasn’t my whole self without it.

from Right As Rain by Lindsey Stoddard (Harper Collins)