Gregory Maguire, born and educated in upstate New York, has lived in Dublin, London, and New England. He began his career as a writer for children at the age of 25, publishing more than a dozen books in as many years. In 1995 his first adult novel, Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, marked a shift in his writing. Wicked, optioned by Universal Films, inspired composer Stephen Schwartz and writer Winnie Holzman to develop it into a musical play. Wicked: The Musical has been running on Broadway for over fourteen years, and in the West End for more than a decade. Touring companies have presented the show in Australia, Southeast Asia, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Canada, Brazil, and northern Europe.
Maguire continued writing for both adults and children. His most recent children’s novel, Egg & Spoon, was a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award winner, and is being developed as a live-action film musical. Other titles for adults include The Next Queen of Heaven (originally published by the Concord Free Press); Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister; After Alice; and, most recently, Hiddensee: A Tale of the Once and Future Nutcracker.
In addition to a four-decade publishing career, Maguire has concerned himself with issues of children’s literature and literacy. In 1987 he cofounded and for a quarter century codirected the nonprofit education charity Children’s Literature New England. He lives in Concord with his husband, the painter Andy Newman, and their three children; their marriage and their boisterous household was featured on French television and also on a segment of the television show, Oprah.
Andy Newman grew up in France, England, and Italy with a father who was a Foreign Service officer. He attended French schools as a child and high school and university in England. After obtaining an undergraduate degree in history, he returned to the United States to attend law school and practiced law for fifteen years in Washington, D.C. In the late 80s, he began to paint in earnest, leaving his firm in order to paint full time at the end of 1994. Five years later, he moved to Concord, Massachusetts, married Gregory Maguire, and is now raising three teenagers, two sons and a daughter.
Andy began exhibiting in Washington in 1989. He has since exhibited — in addition to the United States — in Canada, Europe and Asia and is represented by numerous galleries. His work encompasses everything from the figures exhibited in Parallel Paths to landscapes and abstracts. While his principal medium is oil, he occasionally incorporates acrylic, pastel, crayon, and pencil, depending on the subject matter. Andy’s first major influence among painters was Edward Hopper, followed by Derain and Vlaminck, then Lucian Freud, Daumier and Mark Rothko.