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Vanita Oelschlager is a nationally recognized, award-winning author. Her children’s book publishing company, VanitaBooks, has produced thirty-one books since its founding in 2006.  

Born and raised in suburban Pittsburgh, Vanita is a wife, mother, grandmother, former teacher, caregiver, children’s book author and publisher, and poet.  

In 2007, she was named “Writer in Residence” for the Literacy Program at The University of Akron. She is a graduate of Mount Union University where she currently serves on its Board of Trustees and was recently awarded an honorary doctorate.

“So my experience has been that writing need not be done by some lonely soul locked away in a small, candlelit room. The best writing can be done in the light of day aided by the experiences and wisdom of family and friends.

“I feel that Jamie Barlow is someone people would like to know. I have enjoyed this journey with her. And I have enjoyed all the family and friends who have joined me and her for parts or all of the trip.” 

On Writing Silent Is The Magpie 

“Writing is often characterized as a solitary journey. For me that has never been true, with the possible exception of Air Mask, my first collection of poems.  

“As with my children’s books, Silent Is The Magpie has been a highly collaborative venture. I knew what I wanted to write about – one woman’s quest to find a place, her place, in this great, wide Universe. But it took the help and understanding of many others to get this story told.

“I suppose there is some irony in that – a group effort needed to define a character’s identity. But it was only through the active collaboration of my editors and others that each of the characters took shape and acquired their places in the story.