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Carol Ann Gillespie (1951-) Biography

Personal, Career, Member, Honors Awards, Writings, Work in Progress, Sidelights

Born 1951, in Oil City, PA; Education: Clarion University of Pennsylvania, B.A., 1974; Duquesne University, M.A., 1996; Texas State University, Ph.D., 2005. Politics: "Conservative." Religion: Pentecostal.

Writer and educator. Substitute teacher, North Little Rock, AR, 1990-91, and Seneca Valley school district, 1996-99; Pennsylvania Geographic Alliance, teacher consultant, 1999; adjunct instructor, Grove City, PA, 1998-2002, Butler County Community College, Craberry Township, PA, 1999-2001, Chatham College, Pittsburgh, PA, 1999-2001, and Grove City College, Texas State University, San Marcos, 2002-03.

National Council for Geographic Education, National Geographic Society, Association of American Geographers, Pennsylvania Geographical Society, Pennsylvania Geographic Alliance, Supporting Women in Geography.

Women in Geographic Educations scholarship and grant, National Council for Geographic Education, 2004.

New Zealand, Chelsea House Publishers (Philadelphia, PA), 2002.

Bahrain, Chelsea House Publishers (Philadelphia, PA), 2002.

Ethiopia, Chelsea House Publishers (Philadelphia, PA), 2003.

Ph.D. dissertation on geography education and mental mapping in the old order Amish subculture.

Carol Ann Gillespie told Something about the Author: "My writing career started early! As a small child, I would write 'books' consisting of a piece of typewriter paper folded into pages and copiously illustrated. I'm not sure my dolls appreciated my efforts, but the cows in the barn were quite impressed with their daily lessons from my geography textbook! Growing up as the oldest of five children on a Pennsylvania farm, my two loves—writing and teaching—were obvious even then.

"Many years later, I find myself still writing and teaching (especially geography—the most exciting subject of all!). I have a special fascination with ancient Meso-American cultures (especially the Maya) and am currently writing a juvenile adventure novel set in EK'Balam, a Maya site now under excavation in Mexico. I am also writing a book based on a life-changing epiphany I experienced in Mexico a few years ago."

"The books I wrote for the Chelsea House 'Modern Nation' series were based on extensive research. Because of my fascination with other cultures and lands, researching and writing books of this type is very interesting and rewarding and I hope to do more of this type of work in the future.

"I am very fortunate in my writing because I have never experienced writer's block. On the contrary, a crisp sheet of blank paper or an empty computer screen literally give me goosebumps! I cannot wait to begin! My best advice to a budding writer is two-fold. First of all, read! Read avidly and voraciously! Second, be organized. Before you write anything, outline your finished product. Give it a skeleton or framework. When you have a solid outline, then, write! Flesh out that skeleton with your words and ideas. Write when you can make the time to shut the doors, let the machine take your calls, and forget the laundry and dirty dishes. Waiting until your daily chores are done is a devastating perfectionist pitfall that has been the demise of many an aspiring writer. If you want to be a writer—just write! Have fun and good luck!"

Biographical and Critical Sources


School Library Journal, February, 2003, Michael Giller, review of Bahrain, p. 160.

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