Essie White is a literary agent and founder of Storm Literary Agency.
She specializes in children’s picture books. She also represents some middle grade fiction and middle grade nonfiction.
Essie started her literary career by focusing on those for whom the literature was written: Children. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Education with per primary focus in Special Education. When working with special needs children, struggling with language, she discovered the beauty of words, and the rhythm of a well composed story, engaged them. She later went on to teach traditional elementary students and found that reading was best achieved, when a good book was the focus, not the specific skillset.
While expecting her third child (she has four), Essie completed her Masters of Arts in Education, specializing in Curriculum and Instruction for Early Childhood Education. That’s when her real journey with books began. Using quality children’s literature as the foundation, she began creating curricula for local and national homeschool groups as well as independent preschool organizations. For each subject, each topic, each thematic unit, she used a book as the starting point. When teaching, she read a book to begin each lesson. And when writing curriculum, she utilized a book as the launching pad for each learning objective.
A few years later, and with her youngest daughter as the inaugural student, Essie used this combination of skills and passions, to start her own early childhood development program. Still in operation today, after seventeen years, the school serves over 110 students daily in the Seattle, Washington area of the United States. Although Essie is no longer managing the school on site, each lesson, each day, still begins with a quality children’s book.
Fueling not just their creativity but also their emotional and intellectual growth, Essie understood the power art played in the development of small children. She became accustomed to including art activities as complimentary lessons to the literary ones. Her passion for exceptional art grew as a result. She witnessed the impact of stories told through beautiful pictures, both the stories the children created, as well as those she shared with them in books.
When she relocated to Minneapolis, Minnesota, and entrenched herself into the local children’s book community, Essie started receiving inquiries from local authors, asking about the path to publication. A lot of research later, as well as a lot of work, Essie decided to open her small agency with the hope of ensuring capable artists and authors, could eventually get their work seen by editors and publishers. Storm Literary Agency was subsequently launched in 2014.
Essie White is most proud, not necessarily of the agency’s work, but of the individuals that compile that agency. She is thankful and appreciative of the efforts of those members who work hard to support one another, and to represent the best in children’s publishing, always mindful of those whom reap the benefits: Children.