Photo Credit: Sabra Embury, 2011.

Today is author Ned Vizzini‘s 31st birthday! Ned won an Honorable Mention in 1996 while attending Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan, NY. As he recalls, “I sent a story into The Scholastic Writing Awards when I was 15. I didn’t win silver, gold, or bronze. I won honorable mention! But… I turned my experience receiving The Award into a short essay, sent that essay to a newspaper called New York Press, and my career began.”

Several of the essays that Ned wrote as a teenager ended up being combined into his first book, Teen Angst? Naaah…, which was published when he was just 19. In 2010, his popular book, It’s Kind of a Funny Story, was adapted into a Focus Features film starring Zach Galifianakis, Keir Gilchrist, and Emma Roberts. More recently, Ned is the co-author, with Chris Columbus (director of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone), of the forthcoming fantasy-adventure series House of Secrets. His latest novel, The Other Normals, will be published on September 25, 2012.

Outside of novel writing, Ned has spoken at over 200 schools, universities, libraries, and organizations around the world about writing and mental health. He also provides advice on writing and publishing in our monthly Ask A Writer blog series, and has written for The New York Times, The Daily Beast, and season 2 of MTV’s Teen Wolf!

A very happy birthday to this literary rock star!

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