Visiting Writers Series: Mariko Tamaki
Mariko Tamaki is the author of the young adult novel “Saving Montgomery Sole” and the co-creator of award-winning comics “This One Summer and Skim” (with Jillian Tamaki) and “Emiko Superstar” (Steve Rolston).
In 2015, “This One Summer” received Printz and Caldecott Honors, the Eisner for Best Graphic Album–New, Canada’s Governor General’s award and four-starred reviews. Her 2019 “Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me” is the recipient of five-starred reviews, including Kirkus and Horn Book and was named a Printz Honor Book and as the “Best Children’s or Young Adult Book” at the Harvey Awards as well as receiving the 2020 Walter Dean Myers Award.
Tamaki maintains a solid fascination with the complex process by which teenagers become, or try to become, grown-ups. She has also written for BOOM! Studios, Marvel and DC Comics, working with She-Hulk and Supergirl. Mariko Tamaki began her career as a playwright and performance artist in Toronto, Ontario, working with fat activists Pretty, Porky and Pissed Off and performing and writing plays for Buddies in Bad Times Theater, a world leader in developing queer voices for the stage.
Her first film, “Happy 16th Birthday, Kevin,” premiered at the Inside Out Festival in 2013. In addition to her literary work, Tamaki holds a Master’s in Women’s Studies and worked for two years on a doctorate in linguistic anthropology. Her academic research focused on accents used in drag cabaret performances. Her research inspired an ongoing obsession with the way people talk.