Member: Mystery Writers of American

Member: Sister in Crime

Terri Karsten: Dedicated to exploring the details of everyday life throughout history and sharing the voices of independent women and girls as they struggle against society's expectations

Reproducible Bio:

Terri Karsten has been a writer and educator all her life. After twenty-one years teaching high school English, she now works as a writing coach and focuses on writing historcal fiction. Her debut novel, A Mistake of Consequence (2015, B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree) takes readers into 18th century Colonial America. Her second novel, When Luck Runs Out (2017, Bronze Moonbeam Award) is an orphan train story for middle grade students. Terri has also published two non-fiction books and dozens of articles and short stories in a variety of places, including Highlights for Children, The La Crosse Tribune,and An Encyclopedia of Women's History. 

I am a writer and a teacher. I fell in love with stories and writing when I was in second grade.  Since then, I've found that stories shape my world, open doors for me, give me the courage and the power to face the 'monsters.' Isabella Gardner claims in her poem, The Minotaur, that we all must face our monsters on our own. But I find, with stories, we never have to be alone.

I am from books,
a treasure trove –
1000’s of pages,
gold doubloons piling up
in the caverns of my mind.

I am from Shaken Days and Baby Island,
Toyland and Stranger in a Strange Land,
from a raft made of bunk beds
floating down the Ohio River into the Amazon jungle. 

I am from stories stolen from the pages,
captured with the wind in a tree,
a surreptitious flashlight under the bed covers,
a hammock swinging amidst the cherries.

I am from worlds inhabited
by hobbits and the ghosts of Green Knowe,
by kelpies and water fairies
and the Prince of Donegal

I am from a myriad of times.
I’ve walked the streets of ancient Rome,
and the dark forests of Colonial Massachusetts.
I’ve flown across the country with the barnstormers of the 30’s
and against Thread with the dragons of Pern.

I am from words
flowing into my soul
and back out again in the stories I write.

I am a reader and a writer.
I can be anything.