Cynthia Voigt

Photo of Cynthia Voigt
Cynthia Voigt was born on February 25, 1942 in Boston, Massachusetts. She grew up in southern Connecticut. She decided to become a writer while she was still in high school and attended Smith College to follow this aspiration, however, she received little encouragement there. After graduation, Cynthia worked as a secretary and then as a teacher. She taught in various positions in Maryland from 1968-1988. Voigt published Homecoming, her first novel, in 1981. She has published young adult fiction continually ever since and was the recipient of the 1983 Newbery Medal for her novel, Dicey's Song.

Author's Comment: In my opinion, there are two most important things (for an adult to say to a young person). One is: "I was wrong." Any variation of this will do, such as "I didn't know," "I should have known," "I wish I had known," and of course, "My mistake." The significant message is that adults make mistakes, (because nobody is perfect and nobody knows or understands everything), and that the adult response to an error is to acknowledge it, directly.

There is no loss of face, or authority, in owning up to making an mistake. In fact, it is people who can never admit to doing anything wrong whom it is difficult to trust, in whose wisdom I have no confidence.

Two follows directly and logically from One and is: "I'm sorry." A truly grown-up person can understand that she/he is flawed and makes mistakes. There is no need to kid yourself about being perfect, is there? And aren't you sorry that you did whatever harm you did, when you were making your mistake? An apology is definitely in order.

Nationality: American

Featured series by Cynthia Voigt

Mister Max (Ages 8 and up)
Tillerman Cycle (Ages 11 and up)