Green was born in Indianapolis and his family moved three weeks after he was born to Orlando, Florida. He attended Indian Springs School, a boarding and day school outside of Birmingham, Alabama and graduated from Kenyon College in 2000 with a double major in English and Religious Studies.
After leaving college, Green spent five months working as a student chaplain in a children's hospital while enrolled at the University of Chicago Divinity School (although he never actually attended the school). He intended to become an Episcopalian minister, but his experiences of working in a hospital with children suffering from life-threatening illnesses inspired him to become an author, and later to write The Fault in Our Stars.
Green lived for several years in Chicago, where he worked for the book review journal Booklist as a publishing assistant and production editor while writing Looking for Alaska. While there, he reviewed hundreds of books, particularly literary fiction and books about Islam or conjoined twins. He has also critiqued books for The New York Times Book Review and written for National Public Radio's All Things Considered and WBEZ, Chicago's public radio station. Green later lived in New York City for two years while his wife attended graduate school.
Green's first novel, Looking for Alaska, was published by Dutton Children's Books in 2005. It is a school story and teen romance largely inspired by his experiences at Indian Springs. For it he won the annual Michael L. Printz Award from the American Library Association, recognizing the year's "best book written for teens, based entirely on its literary merit". It also made the ALA's annual list Top 10 Best Book for Young Adults. The film rights were purchased in 2005 by Paramount, which hired Josh Schwartz as writer and director. Five years later, Green told fans that "I desperately loved" the screenplay but there seemed to be little interest at Paramount. As sales of Looking for Alaska continued to increase in 2011, Green showed mixed feelings about a movie, which he felt would threaten readers' "intense and private connection to the story". In 2012, the book reached The New York Times best seller list for children's paperbacks. Green's second novel, An Abundance of Katherines (Dutton, 2006) was a runner-up for the Printz Award and a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.
With fellow young adult authors Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle, Green collaborated on Let It Snow (Speak, 2008), contributing "A Cheertastic Christmas Miracle", which comprises three interconnected short stories set in the same small town on Christmas Eve during a massive snowstorm. On November 27, 2009, the book reached Number 10 on the New York Times bestseller list for paperback children's books.
Green's third novel, Paper Towns, was released on October 16, 2008. It debuted at Number 5 on the New York Times bestseller list for children's books, and the movie rights to Paper Towns were optioned by Mandate Pictures and Mr. Mudd and Green was hired to write the Paper Towns screenplay. On April 30, 2009, Paper Towns was awarded the 2009 Edgar Award for Best Young Adult Novel and the 2010 Corine Literature Prize.
Green and David Levithan, another young-adult writer and a friend, collaborated on the novel Will Grayson, Will Grayson (Dutton, 2010) It was a runner-up (Honor Book) for two of the annual ALA awards, the Stonewall Book Award, for excellence in GLBT children's and YA literature, and the Odyssey Award for Excellence in Audiobook Production. Green later appeared on the sixty-first episode of Smart Mouths Podcast to discuss the novel.
In August 2009, Green confirmed he was writing a new book, titled The Sequel, which was later scrapped. His fifth book, titled The Fault in Our Stars was released on January 10, 2012. Green explained that several parts of The Sequel were reworked into The Fault in Our Stars. Green signed all 150,000 copies of the first printing and his wife and his brother applied their own symbols, a Yeti and an Anglerfish (known as the "Hanklerfish"), respectively. The New York Times Best Seller List for Children's Books listed The Fault in Our Stars at Number 1 for the weeks of January 29, 2012 and February 5, 2012.
Green lives in Indianapolis, Indiana with his wife, Sarah (also known as "The Yeti" in his video blogs, coined due to her request not to be seen on camera), his children - Henry and Alice, and his dog, a West Highland Terrier, named Willy (full name: Fireball Wilson Roberts).
Of all the great YA books I´ve read since becoming a YA author, Looking for Alaska stands ahead of the pack. Green´s depiction of Alaska Young, from the point of view of his protagonist, Miles, is so thorough, so filled with contradictions, so alive, I couldn´t help but feel a tad bit hetero while reading the book. Reading this book, you can smell her; you can feel her skin. I used this novel a lot as I wrote my next YA novel, Openly Straight. Both are set in boarding schools, and both involve protagonists´ quests to rediscover themselves. --Bill KonigsbergFurther Readings:
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green & David Levithan
Reading level: Ages 14 and up
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Speak; Reprint edition (April 5, 2011)
Amazon: Will Grayson, Will Grayson
Amazon Kindle: Will Grayson, Will Grayson
One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, Will Grayson crosses paths with . . . Will Grayson. Two teens with the same name, running in two very different circles, suddenly find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, and culminating in epic turns-of-heart and the most fabulous musical ever to grace the high school stage. Told in alternating voices from two YA superstars (John Green and David Levithan), this collaborative novel features a double helping of the heart and humor that have won them both legions of fans.
More Spotlights at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Lists/Gay Novels
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