Learn More about YA Author Hermine Steinberg

A film that brings tears to your eyes . . .
There are so many but the one that probably had the most impact on me was Schindler’s List. That was probably because my parents were holocaust survivors from Poland. There were many scenes that affected me deeply but the one with the little girl with the red coat just made me sob out loud. My mother was eleven when she was sent off to a labour camp.

Describe your first kiss.
My first kiss can only be described as awkward and embarrassing. I was only 12 and it was on a dare…although I really had a crush on this boy. I don’t even really remember the kiss. I only remember how silly I felt afterwards.

Your favorite children’s book, and why . . .
I always loved to read but one of the first books that really stayed with me – ignited my imagination and actually led me to start writing – was The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. I think I have been searching for that secret door to another world of adventure of fantasy since that time.

A cause that’s closest to your heart, and why . . .
There are many things that concern me today and I have made contributions (money, time and energy) to, but the ones that I think most about today are breast cancer (my mother recently died as a result of breast cancer), alzheimers (my father has been suffering from the disease for over 10 years) and climate change (I am deeply concerned that our actions have destroyed the planet for future generations).

If you could be a character in any novel, who would you be and why?
Of course this answer would change depending on the day and my mood, but at this very moment I would like to be Clove in my own book – The Co-Walkers. She is funny, full of confidence and spirit. Most of the books I have read lately have been quite sad – Caleb’s Crossing, The Glass Castle, Room – I wouldn’t want to be any of the characters in these books.

Explain the worst job that you have ever held.
The worst job I ever had was one summer as a university student working in a typing pool. They probably don’t exist any more. But it was mind numbing, and the more efficient you were, the more you were given.

A quote that motivates you . . .
There are many but one of them is “Try not to become a man of success but a man of value.” by Albert Einstein

The title of the one song you would take with you on that deserted island . . .
Sooo hard to choose! Maybe Hero, or Hallelujah or Somewhere over the Rainbow.

Three Wishes . . .
Of course this sounds so corny and cliche but…
1. World peace
2. My family and friends being happy and healthy.
3. Everybody’s family and friends being happy and healthy.

Favorite game you played as a child . . .
When I was about 5 I loved to play with my cut-outs. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, these were dolls that were made of perforated cardboard. My sister and I or my friends and I would spend hours, making clothes (drawing them and cutting them out) for them, creating stories, building them rooms and houses out of discarded shoe boxes and other household items. 

What would you like readers to take away from your writing?
I would like young people to feel empowered to choose the life they want, to understand that the world needs them and their decisions impact us all.

Hermine Steinberg

Harry Potter Meets the Girl Scouts*

     One knows he/she has a friend for life when one can simply sign the friend up for an activity/duty/donation, and tell him/her about it later.  The friend in question does not pop a blood vessel when hearing of the news, but instead simply replies with, “Okay, how much do I need to bring? . . .  What time is the coach’s meeting? . . . [or]  How long do I have to prepare?”  Thus, it was inevitable my friend and I determined leading a Girl Scout Troop (technically Daisy Troop) was the logical next step in the progression of our relationship.  Having already completed PreK VBS leadership together, pee-wee soccer coaching, as well as starting a few book clubs, we knew our relationship was built on a solid foundation (Dr. Phil would be proud!).  With the decision having been made, we decided to sign our soon-to-be-kindergartners up for Camp Muggles, Magic, and Mayhem, a Harry Potter-themed evening camp hosted by Service Unit 110.
     The official description for the camp reads as follows:
Join us at the Highland Hogwart’s Academy for the “wizarding” world of Girl Scouts.  Have you ever wanted to participate in a Quidditch match?  Well, jump on your broomstick and head on down for some Harry Potter excitement.  Girls will have Quidditch lessons with Madame Hooch, scavenger hunts to locate the 7 horcruxes hidden around camp, experiment  with Science & Potions with Professor Snape, create SWAPS in Diagon Alley and learn astronomy with Professor Sinistra.  We will enjoy refreshments like Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans and more as well as some twilight star gazing.
     Recruiting more friends, another soon-to-be kindergartner and her mother, we all piled in the car

We’re going on a Girl Scout Camp hunt . . .

and headed to our first official Girl Scout Camp in heat advisory weather.  The timing of the camp, 5:15- 9:00 p.m., was ideal considering the 90 degree plus temperature, and as an added bonus, encouraged “students” to sleep late the mornings following camp.
     Safety first, a multi-layer security plan was put in place in order to check campers in and out which put parents and guardians at ease, a reassuring start.  Without further ado, though, I think the joy on the girls’ faces below as well as the authentic adult participation speaks volumes.  Looking forward to Girl Scout Camp in Highland next year . . .  Scout’s Honor!

Campers run through a wall to arrive at Platform 9 3/4 where they eventually meet Albus Dumbledore, the Headmaster of Hogwarts.
The sorting hat ceremony determines which house each “student” belongs.  Professor Trelawny looks on.
The Fat Lady, a portrait who guards Gryffindor Tower at Hogwarts Castle, assists “students” with the scavenger hunt. 
Snack Time at The Leaky Cauldron


 *A special thank you to my partner-in-crime, Sarah, whom is my Harry Potter expert.