About Me . . .

I'm Jestine Ware, former editor at the company behind "Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls" and a freelance writer, editor, and writing coach.


I have worked as a freelance editor for eight years and a full-time editor for five years at small publishers and Timbuktu Labs, Cricket Media, and Open Letter BooksI am a lifelong creative writer with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Creative Writing and a Master of Arts degree in Rhetoric and Composition. I have worked in academic writing centers and taught both creative writing and composition classes. 

At Timbuktu Labs Inc., I worked as developmental editor, copyeditor, proofreader, writer, and acquisitions editor. I also wrote sales sheets, activities, book jacket copy, calendar text, the 2020 Rebel Girls school planner comic "Grace O'Malley: Pirate Queen" (Fall 2019), and articles for Rebel Girls Boundless, the company blog.


See below for Rebel Girls titles I have edited:

During all my years of experience, I've put my skills to work gathering contacts in the publishing industry with editors, literary agents, authors, illustrators, and other publishing professionals. I have given numerous presentations on multiculturalism in the children's book industry, submitting to publishers, and careers in publishing. 


See below for a list of conferences I have frequented during my career:

  • Bologna Children's Book Fair, Bologna, Italy

  • Los Angeles Times Festival of Books​, Los Angeles, CA

  • Los Angeles Comic Con, Los Angeles, CA

  • Chicago Women in Publishing, Chicago, IL

  • Highlights Children's Magazine Editors' Retreat, Boyds Mills, PA

  • Society for Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, North Chicago Chapter

  • Society for Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Diversity Network

  • Editorial Freelancers Association, Chicago, IL

  • PubWest Publisher's Roundtable, Los Angeles, CA

While at Cricket Media, I wrote for 8 of Cricket Media’s 11 magazines and sat on many creative teams creating content for children from babies to young adult. Then I was promoted to editor of the award-winning children’s magazine Spider for children ages 6 to 9. The magazine has received the Parent’s Choice Award, the International Reading Association Paul Witty Short Story Award, Educational Press Association of America Gold Lamp Award, and the Parent's Guide Children's Media Award. At Spider, I edited the work of children’s book authors such as Tololwa M. Mollel, Tim J. Myers, Neal Levin, Michael Chesworth, Debbie Urbanski, Charles Ghigna, Tori Telfer, Pamela Dell, and Rhonda Telfer. I also work with a number of  unpublished authors to hone their craft and polish their manuscripts to bring out the best in each.


At Spider, I edited and curated content for Spider magazine, publishing content that introduced children to a blend of classic and contemporary literature, to new cultures and ideas, and to children just like them. As editor at Spider, I published the first ever LGBTQ story, and you can read more about that groundbreaking project in Bay Windows, Mombian, and Advocate.


See below for my selected publishing credits:


Online Writing Credits

Rebel Girls Boundless

Kaleidoscope Magazine

Print Magazine Articles

Spider Magazine (for ages 6 to 9)
  • Ophelia's Last Word, ongoing feature, Sept 2017 to present

  • Sunken Treasure, board game, forthcoming Sept 2018

  • Wild West Whoppers, joke page, forthcoming Jul/Aug 2018

  • Fab Facts: Ponies, nonfiction page, forthcoming Jul/Aug 2018

  • Dollar Bill Butterfly, origami craft, May/June 2018

  • Fantastical Fairy Field Guide, informational booklet, Mar 2018

  • The Picture-Takin' Man, bio of James Van Der Zee, Feb 2018

  • Clucky Chicken Jokes, joke page, Feb 2018

  • Sweet Potato Sweetheart Crackers, recipe, Feb 2018

  • Valentine's Day Party Blowers, paper craft, Feb 2018

  • The Noisy Chicken, experiment, Feb 2018

  • Patchwork House Puzzles, game, Feb 2018

  • Sneezes Around the World, nonfiction page, Jan 2018

  • Pet Snowy Owl, craft, Nov/Dec 2017

  • Dusting for Fingerprints, activity, Sept 2017

  • Pinecone Derby Racers, craft, Jan 2017

  • Lipong and the Ostrich Chicks: Based on a Maasai Folktale from Kenya, fiction story, Sept 2016

  • How to Snurf and Ski-Do, nonfiction story, Jan 2016

Ladybug Magazine (for ages 3 to 6)
  • Sleepy Monster, poem, forthcoming Oct 2018

  • Story Keeper, poem, Jan 2018

  • Dream Vacation, poem, Feb 2017

  • Cowgirl, poem, Feb 2016

  • Icicles, poem, Nov/Dec 2015

Cicada Magazine (for ages 14+)
  • Tricksters, Thieves, and Other Rogues: A Guide to Folklore Fauna, 'zine, May/June 2017

  • Killer Poppets and Other Dolls that Do Stuff, 'zine, Mar 2016

Babybug Magazine (for ages 0 to 3)
  • Let's Explore: Sandbox, photo feature, May/June 2017

  • Let's Explore: Flying, photo feature, Oct 2016

  • Let's Explore: Hide and Peek, photo feature, Jan 2016​

Muse Magazine (for ages 9 to 14)
  • The Dream Tree: A Brazilian Folktale, comic, Nov/Dec 2016

Click Magazine (for ages 3 to 6)
  • Koala Nap, poem, Jul/Aug 2016

  • A Day at the Pond, nonfiction story, Mar 2016​

Cobblestone Magazine (for ages 9 to 14)
  • Behind the Scenes at the Hoover Dam, nonfiction column, Apr 2016

  • An Architect, nonfiction column, Apr 2016

  • Ah, Wilderness, nonfiction column, Mar 2016

  • Remembering the Ladies, nonfiction column, Mar 2016

  • Calling all Citizen Scientists, nonfiction column, Mar 2016​​

As a freelance editor, ​I edit manuscripts from unpublished children's book authors and illustrators to help them put their best feet forward when submitting work to publishers. I provide manuscript evaluations, developmental edits, critique, copyediting, or proofreading, depending on the stage of each manuscript. I have worked on picture books, middle grade chapter books, young adult novels, and magazine articles. I have also copyedited the adult medical books Zika Virus Disease From Origin to Outbreak and Ebola Virus Disease From Origin to Outbreak.

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls

GNSFRG the Podcast

Lipong and the Ostrich Chicks

A Kenyan folktale for Spider magazine Art by Mariona Cabassa

The Dream Tree

A Brazilian folktale comic for Muse magazine Art by Jesse Tise

Story Keeper

A poem for Ladybug magazine Art by Martha Aviles

A Day at the Pond

A nonfiction article for Click magazine Art by Denise Ortakales

© 2018 by Jestine Ware Chicago IL, USA