Three Times A Charm with Katy Newton Naas

Welcome to Three Times A Charm. I love to introduce readers to the people involved in children’s publishing. Today we welcome middle grade author, Katy Newton Naas. Katy, can tell us a little about yourself?

I’ve been creating characters and telling stories since the day I learned to talk. As a child, they sometimes got me into trouble. I knew I wanted to write books when I won a Young Author's competition as a second-grader for my short story titled, "The Grape Pie." (Don't let its tasty title fool you - it was actually a sad little tale!)

I devoured books as a child and young adult, always doing chores and odd jobs in order to make enough money to buy more of them. Though I continue to age, my true literature love is and has always been children's and young adult fiction.

I currently teach middle school reading and high school English in southern Illinois, as well as children's church. I graduated from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale with a bachelor's degree in English Education and a master's degree in Reading and Language Studies. I enjoy my life out in the country with my husband, two kids, and fourteen pets.

Fourteen pets! Holy cow. Wait, do you have a cow among those pets? You’re here to talk about a couple books today. Tell us them.

Here are the blurbs to accompany my two middle grade novels, Guardian and Operation: Bully Renovation.

Drake, Kinsey’s assistance dog, has been her best friend since the day she met him. They have a special connection – he can sense her seizures before they occur. The other students have always loved having Drake in the classroom, making Kinsey feel special, not strange. But just a short time in a new middle school changes all of that.

            Jack Sullivan is Blackwell Middle School’s scariest bully. When students and teachers see him coming down the hallway, they run the other way. He has no friends; he doesn’t need them. School is a waste of his time.
            But after a car accident with his father leaves him in need of surgery, Jack has to have a tissue donor. Strangely, he then begins having memories from events that never actually happened to him – memories of being bullied by bigger, meaner boys. Jack learns he is experiencing cellular memory, making him receive the memories of his tissue donor…who just so happened to be a weak, helpless victim of bullying.
            Jack decides he has to make things right. To do that, he offers each of his former victims an apology, along with the chance to let each one get even with him. But Jack quickly learns that earning their forgiveness won’t be easy... 

I recommend my book to readers who like:

GUARDIAN: dogs, stories about people with challenges

Those both sound great. Now let’s move on to the threes. Give us your top 3 responses to the following to help us get to know you better.

  • Top 3 books you recommend reading and why you recommend them.
Wonder by RJ Palacio – because you will fall in love with Auggie in a way you’ve never experienced from any other book character
Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk – because Annabelle is so incredibly strong and learns that her actions matter
Freak the Mighty – because it changed my life when I was a kid and after I read it, I knew all I wanted was to write books

  • Top 3 leisure activities.

1)      Spending time with my kids…all 16 of them! (2 children, 3 dogs, 3 cats, and 8 ducks)
2)      Curling up in my chair with chocolate milk and a good book
3)      Writing. I make time to do it every day, even if things are crazy-busy and it’s after midnight before I get started.

  • Top 3 favorite places.

1)      THE BEACH. Any beach. Just let me feel the sand in my toes.
2)      Disneyworld. Even when you’re all grown up, you can still feel the magic there!
3)      Playing outside in the yard with my kids, no matter the season. Snowball fights, water balloon fights, baseball games…I love it all!

Where can our tech savvy readers find you and your book online?

Katy, it’s been a pleasure hosting you today. Best of luck to your books and with your writing.



  1. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! That cover was actually drawn by a former student of mine, Logan Tharp. He is actually illustrating my first picture book right now as well. He is so talented!

  2. Thank you, Kai, for hosting me! I had so much fun hanging out with you today! :)

  3. My kids do love books about animals. Katy, it sounds like you need to live in Florida. Seriously. ;)

    1. I always loved books about animals when I was a kid, too. :)
      And I LOVE Florida! We went to Panama City Beach back in October and I tried my best to talk my husband into buying a place down there. But, you know, we've got these things called "jobs" and "bills" that are always messing up my brilliant ideas! ;)

  4. Your books sound fantastic, Katy. As an animal lover, I enjoy reading about dogs, cats, and all the other delightful creatures, even though I'm not a child. I don't have 16 kids, just 2 cats and the kids are all grown. Congratulations and best of luck to you.


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