Zu loves working with students of all ages to help engage them in reading and writing.
She can tailor school visits to your needs and state educational standards.
She is a founding member of WordSpring Creative Writing Conference now in its sixth year. This successful event is the largest on-campus gathering of student and community writers held on the Butte College campus in Northern California. Featured WordSpring authors include Chitra Divakaruni, Pam Houston, Jael Richardson and Andrew Lam.
She’s worked with children and teens through Pacific Coast Children's Writers Workshop, Writers in the Schools, LEAP, and the L.A. Reading Council, teaches community college and speaks at literary events around the country. In addition she has helped develop educational texts for Aplia/Cengage Learning, and edits fiction and essays for authors working in the field.
Her debut novel about fathers and daughters, THE LUCKY PLACE (Front Street Press, 2008), is an Honor Award Book for the 2009 Paterson Prize and is an Accelerated Reader, a 2011 California Library Collection's List choice, a 2009 Kansas State Reader's Circle Recommendation, a 2009-2010 Pennsylvania School Librarian's Top 40 Young Adult Book, a Cynsations "New Voices" pick for 2008, an ALAN (Assembly on Literature for Adolescents) pick for August 2008 and is “Highly Recommended” by Library Media Connection in a starred review.
Zu's non-fiction books and essays for young people include; CATHERINE THE GREAT (Scholastic), A JAPANESE AMERICAN IN WWII (Harcourt), THROUGH THE WARDROBE: Your Favorite Authors on C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia (BenBella Books), and the upcoming NOTABLE NATIVE AMERICANS (Salina Bookshelf). Her middle grade novel in progress GLIDING HOME is a 2009 finalist for HUNGER MOUNTAIN'S Katherine Paterson Prize.
Her work has also appeared in numerous publications such as HARPER'S, YOGA JOURNAL and the scholarly journal The ALAN REVIEW.
A former magazine and book editor, she holds an MFA in Writing from Vermont College where she was awarded Harcourt’s prestigious post-graduate semester in 2006. She now holds yoga workshops for creative writers at Vermont College each January and July.
Zu blogs about writing and young adult literature at “Through the Tollbooth."