"I like kids," says Connie Bretz, a retired kindergarten teacher from Phoenixville, Pennsylvania. Connie, a reader for our Fiction, Non-fiction, and Writing Basics courses, has taught writing to both kids and adults—at universities, colleges, high schools, writers conferences, and the Y.M.C.A.—and she has worked as a professional storyteller across seven states.
With 2001 published pieces to her credit, Connie writes in a wide variety of forms, including humor, poetry, interviews, children's stories, meditations, and personal writing. She writes a column of local history for The Phoenix, a Phoenixville newspaper. She has also published two limited-edition books.
In 1997, she was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in the news feature category, for a serialized children's story about an albino deer, based on an actual sighting in a nearby park. She has won nine awards for poetry and a Wall of Fame plaque for writing presented by the high schools where she taught.
Inspired by an article she researched and wrote for Ranger Rick, Connie collects stuffed hedgehogs. Since she doesn't own a car, she does a lot of biking and walking. She also enjoys tap dancing, clowning, attending Bible studies, viewing quality movies, and reading biographies.
Her advice to writers is the same advice she recently gave to students, when honored as alumna of the year at the high school she attended: "Uncork your curiosity!"