Last updated on Monday, December 23, 2002
Award-winning writer Joann Mazzio has made her mark in children's literature, but she also produces a steady mixture of fiction and nonfiction for mainstream magazines.
Her two young-adult novels, published by Houghton Mifflin, are used extensively in English classes across the United States. The One Who Came Back was nominated for an Edgar by the Mystery Writers of America. Leaving El Dorado was named Best Western Juvenile by the Western Writers of America. It has been optioned for a movie. Both books have been recommended by the American Library Association and included on many state reading lists, and both have been published in Europe and selected for European book clubs.
Mazzio's numerous stories in children's magazines such as Cricket have been reprinted in textbooks and anthologies in this country and abroad. Her writing is frequently used in reading comprehension test materials.
On the subject matter in her writing, Mazzio says, "I'm interested in a wide range of subjects. A degree in aeronautical engineering and years of work in that field have sustained my interest in science. My fifteen years as a high school math teacher taught me a lot about young people."
Mazzio lives in the old gold-mining town of Pinos Altos, NM, and divides her time between full-time writing and travel.
Visit Joann's web site at http://www.mazziojoann.com
Articles by Joann Mazzio
Most of the 300 residents of this mountain hamlet will say that far from being an appendage to Silver City, Pinos Altos is a distinctive community in its own right. Looking down on the larger city from an altitude of 7,040 feet, it is ten degrees cooler in the summer and ten degrees brisker in the winter.
Santa Clara, formerly called Central, is nine miles east of Silver City on US 180. The oldest village in the District, its history is closely tied to Fort Bayard. Soldiers from the fort found their recreation in Santa Clara. At one time, some forty working mines in the area produced gold and silver.
Becoming a New Mexican has not been easy. But, I'd finally got to where I could wear my Tony Lama's two hours at a time without wincing. I'd traded my car on a used compact truck, which I sort of regarded as training wheels until I got enough confidence to move up to a big job, the kind that makes you think of mud bogs. Even with a small truck, details are important. I had a Lota Burger wrapper lying in the cab and a flattened Tecate can in the truck bed. (You are what you drive around with.)
For the next, and also mandatory, accessory to the truck, I had to have a dog, one that would stand in the truck bed and stretch its neck full length to snap at the ears of elderly shoppers loading groceries into their cars in Albertson's parking lot; a dog that would pace the bed stiff-legged at 65 MPH ready to repel all invaders, that would interact loudly and aggressively with other dogs riding in the backs of other pickups.
Over half-a-million visitors a year enjoy the world's largest gypsum dune field at White Sands National Monument in Southern New Mexico. The sparkling white dunes are ever-changing, ever-moving and ever-growing
Where does the gypsum originate? It is constantly added to the dunes from its source in Lake Lucero. Comparatively few visitors see the ten-square-mile lake bed, even though it is part of the monument, and, with a little planning, is accessible to everyone.