About Meadow Rue Merrill
Meadow Rue Merrill grew up on an Oregon farm where she roamed the fields, built hay forts and rode her pony under the towering Douglas firs with her brother, Sunny. For entertainment, she invented stories about her collection of model horses, her porcelain animals and her friends. Real life wasn’t nearly as interesting. Neither was school.
By fourth grade, Meadow was so far behind in reading that her teachers sat her in front of a machine that scrolled through paper to make her read faster. To the rescue came her clever mom, Lucy, who gave her The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. After exploring an English estate with Mary Lennox and a magical boy named Dickon, Meadow was hooked on books! Her favorites included The Black Stallion and Trixie Belden series and anything by Madeleine L’Engle.
When she was in sixth grade, Meadow’s family moved to Maine. For a few years life was nearly normal. Then her single mom whisked Meadow and Sunny off to Darwin, Australia, to live at a mission where she illustrated books for new readers. For the next year, Meadow shared her room with baseball-sized spiders and clouds of flying cockroaches, an experience that later inspired her first (unpublished) novel. After returning to Maine, Meadow endured high school, enrolled in one year of Bible college, and graduated with a degree in English literature from Gordon College. Two weeks later, she married Dana, her high school sweetheart, and went to work as a reporter for Maine’s smallest daily newspaper, The Times Record, where she won first-place in feature writing from The Maine Press Association. Three years later, Meadow welcomed her first child and resigned from the paper to write from home.
As a freelance journalist, Meadow corresponded for The Boston Globe, wrote parenting essays for The New York Times and contributed to Family Circle, The Boston Sunday Globe Magazine, the Portland Press Herald, and Down East magazine, where she served as a contributing editor–all while raising six children. She also co-authored a travel book and a 150-year history of The Harvard School of Dental Medicine. In 2018, her inspirational memoir, Redeeming Ruth: Everything Life Takes, Love Restores, about the adoption and loss of a child with disabilities from Uganda, won a Christopher Award and the Maine Literary Award for memoir. But Meadow’s true passion has always been writing for children, a career she nurtured through workshops held by SCBWI, the Highlights Foundation and the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast Writers’ Conference. Her five-part Lantern Hill Farm children’s picture book series, celebrating the holidays with activities that build children’s faith, includes: The Christmas Cradle, The Backward Easter Egg Hunt, The Best Birthday, The Lantern Hill Light Parade, and The Thanksgiving Blessing.
Meadow currently teaches 7th-10th grade English Language Arts and 8th grade Bible at a small, Christian school and is completing an M.Ed. in Literacy for Writing and the Teaching of Writing at the University of Maine. She is also a certified Teacher-Consultant of the Maine Writing Project and enjoys sharing with churches, educators, students and other writers. When not working, she can be found curled up with a book in a little house in the big woods of Mid-coast Maine where she lives with her family and a rescue puppy named Fable. Her blog, Faith Notes, appears twice each month online and in several Maine newspapers. You can also catch her on Facebook and Twitter.