Jeff C. Young: Young Adult Writer from Lebanon

Everyone agrees that education is one of the most important benefits we can give our children, whether they’re Lebanon children or Indianapolis children. But Lebanon schools aren’t the only repositories for educational information. The libraries of Indiana are packed with a bevy of non-fiction books geared toward youngsters, books designed to expose our youth to the cultures, history, and knowledge of the United States and the world. Of course, these books must be written to exist. Someone has to go through the grunt work of researching, writing, and editing these knowledge databases. One tireless advocate for our youth’s independent study is Jeff C. Young, a young adult non-fiction writer who has penned over 30 non-fiction tomes ranging from military history to sports biographies.

Born in Orangeburg, South Carolina, Jeff C. Young spent most of his childhood in Lebanon, Indiana, a town to the north of state capital Indianapolis. He graduated from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana in 1971, and it was in Muncie that he began his writing career. Over the years, Young has worked a journalist, freelance writer, a librarian, and editor. Of course, writing gigs were not always forthcoming; when Jeff C. Young wasn’t involved in any writing projects, he was a pizza delivery man. He has delivered pizzas in four different decades; he’s probably always welcome to work at an Indianapolis restaurant if his non-fiction career inexplicably falls through.

Jeff C. Young was first published in 1997, a book titled The Fathers of American Presidents. Since then he’s written over 30 non-fiction young adult books, including Inspiring African-American Inventors, Xtreme Atheletes: Shaun White, Trucks: The Ins and Outs of Monster Trucks, Semis, Pickups, and Other Trucks, and Henry Ford: Genius Behind the Affordable Car. Young finally gained recognition as a writer in 2007, when Bleeding Kansas: The Violent Clash Over Slavery in the Heartland took home the Spur Award for Best Juvenile Non-Fiction Work. Though Jeff C. Young has long since left Lebanon behind (he now lives in Sarasota, Florida), this famous Lebanon person will always have roots in small town Indiana, no matter how many topics he writes about.

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