Alyssa Satin Capucilli has been writing books for children since the early 1990s. When her latest work, Biscuit Plays Ball, becomes available on March 20, 2012, her titles count will climb to 75.
Her books are intended for young children (typically age four to eight) and especially kids who are learning to read. In addition to working on the Biscuit series, she has written a number of other books for youngsters including an ongoing series about a duck named Katy who loves to dance.
Inspiration for the Biscuit books came when her daughter Laura cared for a neighbor’s golden retriever during an overnight sleepover. Her daughter (four years old at the time) talked to and read to her new furry friend as if it understood every word. This did not go unnoticed by Capucilli, already a published author at the time. On the following day, she began work on what would become the first Biscuit book, released by HarperCollins Publishers in 1996 and still available.
"Biscuit is part yellow lab, part golden lab and all puppy," said Capucilli. “He is curious, endearing, loving, silly, and at times mischievous, but always sweet.”
Books published in the Biscuit series have been translated into many languages including Afrikaans, Chinese, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, and Spanish.
Capucilli will read Biscuit Plays Ball at the Tucson Festival of Books, to be held March 10-11, 2012 at the University of Arizona and visit local schools. She will also read at the Knoxville Children's Festival of Reading in Knoxville, Tennessee in May.
Hot off the press
Her latest Ready-to-Read book called Katy Duck Makes a Friend was released by Simon and Schuster this month and two more books in this series will come out in the spring of this year.
She is also producing a series of interactive photography action books that already includes four collections (children participating in ballet, gymnastics, soccer and karate).
Capucilli received a TIER "body of work" award last year at the Savannah Children's Book Festival (TIER stands for Teach, Inspire, Empower Young Minds through Reading).
Born in Brooklyn, she attended Midwood High School and graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville; she was a member of a professional dance company before pursuing a career in dance instruction. She wrote stories, poems, and staged puppet shows as a child but didn't take up writing until after her two children were born.
She attributes her interest in books to her parents. "They filled our home with a love of reading," she said. "Weekly trips to the library with my mother and sisters were always a much anticipated event."
She returned to Sarah Lawrence College to teach children's book writing but currently is on leave to satisfy book commitments.