The Year Ahead

Happy 2016! I’m a bit behind because I’ve been working hard to meet a couple of deadlines. But I want to share some news about the coming year.


Nothing is better than connecting with reader-friends in person!

Kathleen Ernst library program

I’ll be visiting a number of libraries, bookstores, and other venues this year. I’m particularly excited about several special events:

In February, I will be in Door County, Wisconsin, for a residency with Write On, Door County. Write On is collaborating with Peninsula Music Festival on the final performance of Feb Fest III, a concert of Scandinavian music inspired by… my Chloe novels! How cool is that? I’m thrilled.


The February 27th performance will feature works by Carl Nielsen, Edvard Grieg, Franz Berwald, and Jean Sibelius. I’ll read excerpts from my work, and sign books.  You can find all the information here.

While in Door County I will also teach a workshop called Writing Your Family Stories, Your Way on February 29.

Speaking of workshops, I’m teaching a weekend class called Exploring Your Heritage:  A Writing Sampler at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in March.


You don’t need to be of Norwegian descent to participate! I developed these classes because so many people tell me they’d like to write about their family or community history, and don’t know where to begin.

You can always keep current with my schedule by visiting the Calendar page on my website. If you sign up for my email list, you’ll get—among other goodies—a personal invitation whenever I travel to your area.

Chloe Ellefson Mysteries

The seventh Chloe Ellefson Mystery, A Memory of Muskets, will be published in October. My first draft was much too long, and I’m still trimming, but it’s almost ready to turn in. As soon as I do, I’ll start developing the next Chloe adventure. A new location, and new ethnic group to explore…that’s all I’ll say for now.

I’ve been delighted to hear that Death on the Prairie is resonating with so many readers. Lots of us grew up reading Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books! I plan to finish my blog tour of Laura homesites in coming weeks, and I also want to begin a Little House book discussion. Stay tuned.


If you need a Chloe fix, two of the historic sites featured in the books are open year-round:  Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum and the Mill City Museum.  If you can, schedule your visit to the MCM to coincide with one of the ticketed Washburn A Mill tours, which takes visitors behind the scenes.

American Girl

Many of you have asked if I have any more children’s books on the horizon. Yes, I do! I’m working on a new book for American Girl now. It won’t be published until 2017, and I can’t talk about it yet, so again…stay tuned.


Although this post is about looking forward, I need a moment to look back, too. I’ve heard from many lovely readers in the past twelve months or so.  Some are children.


Isn’t this sweet?



Yes, I most certainly did write back.

And some are adults.

You have created such wonderful characters – I feel like I can drive
to Eagle and meet up with Chloe and Roelke for lunch!!

I adore Chloe! Her stories keep me entertained and wanting to see
where she takes us next.

I finally read A Settler's Year and all I can say is I wish it were
called A Settler's YearS because I wanted more!

Writing books has connected me with old friends, and brought me many new ones!  Huge thanks to you all.

Char.Joanne, Kathleen Ernst

I wish you and yours a most wonderful year.  Happy reading!


16 Responses to “The Year Ahead”

  1. Nancy Says:

    Hi Kathleen—I’ve just finished re-reading all the Little House books and have so enjoyed it. Your “Death on the Prairie” really inspired me to do that. I enjoy all the emails with information about your books that you send and I forwarded them on to my friends who also enjoy your books. Look forward to your new Chloe book coming out!! Thanks

  2. MaryAnn Forbes Says:

    It sounds as though you are going to be quite busy sharing your words and talent. I have yet to read any of your work; you are definitely on my 2016 list of authors. I look forward to becoming better acquainted through your books and FB.📖📚

  3. Carolyn McDaniel Says:

    Yeah, you’re writing another book for AG. A mystery? A series? looking forward to finding out which it is.

  4. Hope McLeod Says:

    I can’t believe the breadth of your work and the new shores it’s taking you to. Kudos!!!!

  5. Brenda Huey Says:

    I am 58 and have been an avid reader since I was 5. Your American Girl stories and your Prarie series are stories that takes me back in my own childhood days. Thank you for great stories and for bringing back my yesterday’s.

  6. QNPoohBear Says:

    Huzzah! A new AG book! I can’t wait to read it. I think Kirsten’s mystery is my favorite of your AG books (Kirsten is my sentimental favorite being my childhood best friend) but I loved the Caroline series too.

  7. Jennifer Spader Says:

    I’m a big fan of American Girl dolls because I really want Lea Clark so that I can take care of her by making sure that she needs a lot of love and attention by being able to sleep with her at night! I have seven dolls in my collection that are standing on my dresser in a straight line! I don’t have the Lovely Leopard Ptint pajamas and shorts for Grace Thomas because she likes them!

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