My name is Rita Lorraine Hubbard

Hello Everyone!

I am a former special education teacher and currently a full-time children’s writer, book blogger and freelance editor. My newest picture book, The Oldest Student: How Mary Walker Learned to Read (Random House), debuted as the No. 1 Picture Book in Women’s Biographies and Children’s American History, and has won the 2022 Texas Bluebonnet Award, the 2022 Rhode Island Children’s Book Award, the 2021 SCBWI Crystal Kite, and the 2021 Comstock Read-aloud Award.

My first picture book, Hammering for Freedom: The William Lewis Story (Lee and Low), debuted on September 24, 2018. It is a School Library Journal selection and received positive Kirkus and Horn Book reviews.

I also penned African Americans of Chattanooga, which has been adopted by the state of Tennessee as a part of its official bibliography.

Thanks for visiting!

Books Sold
5-Star Reviews
Language Translations
Honors & Awards

Rita reads her books and poems...

Let's take this writing journey together!

The Oldest Student

An enslaved teen is set free by the Emancipation Proclamation at age 15 but does not learn to read until she is 116 years old.

Hammering for Freedom

An enslaved blacksmith rents HIMSELF from his owner and spends the next 25 years working to free his entire family.


This young man has quite a story. Stay tuned as I take you along step-by-step as I chronicle his amazing life.

Upcoming Course​s

Designed for budding writers.

Rita's Tips and Random Thoughts

The Un-Editorial Notepad #14 – Are You Published…or Printed?

How to know the difference between being published and being printed.
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Little Things You Should Know: Readability

Hi Everybody, Just stopping by to ask an important writing question (Yes, another one!). Is your work readable? Now, I didn’t say legible, I said...
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Little Things You Should Know: Follow the Rules

Hi Aspiring Writers, Are you thinking the publishing business is a battlefield? Well, it is…in a way. Evenso, you can’t start a relationship with a...
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Rita Writes History