Bexley News

Thurber House Author

Weston tries to be a 'helpful big sister'

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Carol Weston might live in New York City, but her career as a writer started gaining momentum in German Village.

As a newlywed, Weston moved to Columbus in 1980 with her husband, Robert Ackerman, a Bexley native who had landed a local job in marketing.

The couple lived in a second-story apartment on South Third Street, where the fire escape led to their front door. Weston said it was an interesting place to interview the late actress Joanne Woodward for House & Garden magazine.

In the years since, Weston has become a nationally recognized author of works for children and teens, penning 13 books, both fiction and non-fiction, and writing an advice column, Dear Carol, for Girl's Life magazine.

"What I've tried to be is a very helpful big sister," Weston said.

From 2 to 3 p.m. April 13, Weston will discuss her new book, Ava and Pip, at Thurber House, 77 Jefferson Ave.

The story involves sisters, Ava and Pip Wren.

Weston said Ava feels bad for her painfully shy sister, but at the same time she's angry at her because she's taking all the family energy.

"So I think a lot of kids, probably adults too, can relate to somebody who feels invisible in her own family," Weston said.

Weston and Ackerman lived in German Village for a year.

Weston, who was establishing a career as a freelance journalist, became a friend of Sue Grafton, author of the popular alphabet series of mystery books. Grafton also lived in the Village at the time. They used to jog through Schiller Park together and have remained friends ever since, Weston said.

Weston, 57, considers among her early mentors Irv Levey, who commuted from Columbus to New York for a job in publishing. He told her to consider writing an advice book for young girls.

"At the time, believe it or not, there were no self-help books for girls," she said.

So, in 1985, Weston released Girltalk: All the Stuff Your Sister Never Told You. It was her most successful book to date, printed in 12 languages and selling more than 200,000 copies.

A native of Armonk, N.Y., Weston comes from a literary household. Her father was a writer and her mother was a poet and editor. Her brother, Mark, also is an author.

In addition to being a playwright, her husband is the film unit prop master for Saturday Night Live.

She said they get to Columbus about once a year and she still enjoys the long-standing neighborhood destinations: Lindey's, Max Erma's, Hausfrau Haven and the Old Mohawk.

"We have extremely fond memories of wonderful German Village," Weston said.

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