Elizabeth Rusch

Elizabeth Rusch

Associate Fellow at the Attic Institute of Arts and Letters

Elizabeth Rusch is one of the most prolific and popular writers of books for children and an award-winning journalist. Her book, The Mighty Mars Rovers, has been named a New York Public Library Best Book of 2012, a Kirkus Best Book of 2012, a School Library Journal Best Book of 2012 and was also named an Outstanding Science Trade Book by the National Science Teachers Association. 

Her first children’ book, Generation Fix, was a Smithsonian magazine Notable Children’s Book and a finalist for the International Reading Association’s Children’s Book Award and the Oregon Book Award. 

Will It Blow? was a Natural History magazine Best Book for Young Readers and a finalist for the Oregon Book Award.

The Planet Hunter was also an Oregon Book Award finalist, while A Day with No Crayons won the OBA’s Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children’s Literature and is a finalist for the Illinois Children’s Choice award.

Her nonfiction picture book biography For the Love of Music: The remarkable story of Maria Anna Mozart is due out from Random House next spring. She also has two books forthcoming from Houghton Mifflin: The Man behind the Mars Rovers and Volcano SWAT.

As an award-winning freelance writer and former managing editor of Teacher magazine and contributing editor to Child, Rusch has published more than 100 articles in national magazines for children and adults.

Her publishing credits include Muse, Read, American Girl, Harper’s, Mother Jones, Parenting, Smithsonian, and Backpacker, among many others. Rusch has received the Kay Snow Literary Award, a Maggie Award, and an Oregon Literary Fellowship, among other honors.

Liz has led workshops and given lectures and presentations for children & adults at schools such as Childpeace Montessori, Winterhaven, Maimonides in Portland, Oregon; colleges such as Portland State University, Duke University, and the University of California at Berkeley; and conferences such as the Willamette Writers Conference, South Coast Writers Conference, Chalk It Up for Literacy, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators in Portland and Denver.

Watch a video of Elizabeth on Jody Seay’s show, The Back Page

Read an interview with Elizabeth

Liz's liteary recognition:



* Junior Library Guild selection

* "Enthralling…edge-of-your-seat reading" (Kirkus Best Book of 2012, starred review)

* Starred reviews Booklist, Horn, School Library Journal


* Starred review, Publishers Weekly

* Starred review, Kirkus

* "A masterpiece." (The Oregonian)


* Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children's Literature


* "A fascinating tale, charmingly told" (Los Angeles Times)


* Natural History magazine Best Books for Young Readers

* Washington Reads pick


* Smithsonian magazine notable

* IRA Children's Book Award finalist


WHY I LIKE TO TEACH AT THE ATTIC INSTITUTE: “I love helping people turn their ideas into promising manuscripts,” 

Upcoming Classes

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