Display: Louis Sachar
Born: March 20, 1954 in East Meadow, NY.
Current Home: Austin, TX
The Path to Becoming an Author:
It wasn’t until high school that Sachar began to love reading. In college, he developed a particular interest in Russian literature and somehow got the ridiculous ambitious notion to learn the language and read his favorite Russian authors in the original language. After taking over a year of Russian, he realized it was still Greek to him. Sachar dropped out of Russian class and tried to figure out what class he should take instead. As he wandered across the campus, he saw an elementary school girl handing out pieces of paper. He took one from her. It read: ‘Help. We need teachers’ aides at our school. Earn three units of credit.’
Prior to that time, Sachar had no interest whatsoever in kids. However, he signed up to be a teacher’s aide because he needed to take something other than Russian, and it sounded easy. It turned out to be not only his favorite class, but also the most important class Sachar took during his college career. After he was at the school for a while, he was asked to be the ‘Noon Time Supervisor.’ It was his job to watch over the kids during lunch. Sachar played games with the kids who all called him ‘Louis, the Yard Teacher.’
A Career Choice:
Sideways Stories from Wayside School was published just as Sachar began law school. For six years he struggled over trying to decide between being an author or a lawyer. During the time that he finished law school and took a job as a lawyer, Sachar wrote three more children’s books. His decision had been made. Sachar has been an attorney since 1981, but has chosen to devote his time to writing children’s books.