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Rachel Simon

Rachel Simon

Career Roadmap

Rachel's work combines: Writing, Art, and Upholding a Cause and Belief

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Day In The Life


I write books that feature characters with disabilities and I give talks about disability/diversity.

Skills & Education

Here's the path I took:

  • High School

    Solebury School

  • Bachelor's Degree

    Anthropology, General

    Bryn Mawr College

  • Graduate Degree

    Creative Writing

    Sarah Lawrence College

Here's the path I recommend for someone who wants to be a Poets, Lyricists & Creative Writers:

High School

Learn more about different paths to this career

Life & Career Milestones

My path in life took a while to figure out

  • 1.

    I started writing at the age of 7. My father encouraged me, and even bought me my own typewriter.

  • 2.

    A classmate told me, "You're a good writer, but you don't want to be good; you want to be great."

  • 3.

    My first few books did fine but they didn't break the sound barrier, so I had to take odd jobs.

  • 4.

    My first job was at a law firm. I didn't belong. I preferred the secretaries & mailroom employees.

  • 5.

    A friend noticed that I "saw" people that most others overlooked.

  • 6.

    I knew that was something I'd learned growing up with my sister, who has an intellectual disability.

  • 7.

    I was inspired to write a book about my relationship with my sister; it became a bestseller.

  • 8.

    I'd never thought of speaking as part of my career path, but it fell into my lap and now I love it.

Defining Moments

How I responded to discouragement


    Messages from Teachers:

    You need to edit this. This story could probably be better.

  • How I responded:

    The first time a teacher edited my story, I mistook her constructive criticism as a sign that my writing was poor, I wasn't smart, etc. Only years later did I realize that she'd actually been encouraging me to be clearer, deeper, more precise. A similar thing happened in college; after a friend did an intense critique of one of my stories, I asked him (in tears), "But don't you think I'm a good writer?" He replied, "Yes, but you don't want to be a good writer; you want to be a great writer."

Experiences and challenges that shaped me

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  • My parents split up when I was very young, so along with my sister's disability, I was dealing with lots of family drama. However, I was lucky enough to have a father who encouraged my writing. It's so important to find someone who believes in you.

  • My sister has learning issues. She's only 11 months younger than me, so that's always been part of my world. Later in life, I realized how much being my sister's sister shaped my life and my views, which led me to write my most successful books.