Nina Victor Crittenden

Nina Victor Crittenden: Painting With Love of Art & Animals

Published in the November 2015 issue of Books Make a Difference magazine.
Award-winning illustrator Nina Victor Crittenden sits at her home studio and begins to paint. Shy and modest, she’s hesitant to talk about herself, but the words come easier as she strokes her watercolor brush across the back of a flying dragon. A certified veterinary technician, Nina is an animal lover. She says, “What I love about being an artist is that I can draw pictures of dogs and cats and horses ... It gives me a chance to combine two things I really love: artwork and animals.” [...]
Terri Barnes, author of Spouse Calls: Messages From a Military Life

Terri Barnes: Messages From Military Life

Published in the March/April 2015 issue of Books Make a Difference magazine.
Third-generation military wife Terri Barnes writes transparent, personal, and emotionally universal messages that have made her weekly Stars and Stripes column, Spouse Calls, the newspaper’s longest-running military life column. The relevance of her writing to both military and civilian readers led to her first book, and Terri is both humbled and excited by the effect her book is having in diverse communities to stir conversation and increase understanding of military life. [...]
Kimberly Johnson, Friendship 9

The Power of Writing to Right History

Published in the March/April 2015 issue of Books Make a Difference magazine.
A children’s book prompted a new day in court for a group of civil rights activists known as the Friendship Nine, half a century after they served jail time for attempting to sit at a whites-only lunch counter in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Seven of the surviving Friendship Nine, all in their seventies, came to court on January 28, 2015, in dressed in their Sunday best. Circuit Court Judge John C. Hayes III, whose uncle sentenced the Friendship Nine in the original case, read each of their names, along with their offense, disposition, and sentence, and then vacated the convictions of all nine men. [...]
Laura Bates Shakespeare in prison

Laura Bates: The Bard Is Still Saving Lives

Published in the March/April 2015 issue of Books Make a Difference magazine.
Reading Shakespeare in prisons is not new, but doing so in solitary confinement, with those considered to be the most dangerous and hardened inmates, was unheard of—until Laura Bates gave it a try. Laura’s book Shakespeare Saved My Life shares the success of her Supermax program and the transformation of convicted killer Larry Newton. Though he’ll spend his life in prison with no chance of parole, Larry says he’s free. Laura's book has prompted other prisons to set up similar programs. [...]

A magazine writer and editor for much of her career, Karen writes for and publishes Books Make a Difference online magazine.

She is often asked to write features or columns for various other publications and web sites as well. In this section, you’ll find links to samples of her work.