All About Erzsi

Erzsi Deak (pronounced “aire-zshee” ; “Erzsi” is a Hungarian diminutive for “Elizabeth” (like “Beth” or “Betty”). She grew up believing that “Deak” meant “royal scribe,” but learned a few years ago that it’s closer to “Clark” or “Clerk.” The noble belief was good while it lasted. A journalist for ages, Erzsi has covered fashion and children’s features from Alaska to San Francisco to Paris. She has tramped the Alaska Pipeline looking for environmental problems, worked as a camp counselor managing the craft hut, and always as a writer. She also edits the SCBWI Bulletin “Here, There, Everywhere” column that shines a bright light on children’s books around the world. Erzsi has been known to live on planes and at the book fairs in Frankfurt, Bologna and London. For family dinners, you can usually find her in France or the US.


In addition to writing about flowering spaces and urban fowl, Erzsi launched Hen&ink, a literary studio and is happy to tell you about her fabulous coop. Hen&ink provides literary services: agenting, scouting and translation. Visit for more.


Urban Crayon Paris: The City Guide for Parents with Children

Urban Crayon Paris: The City Guide for Parents with Children By Sheridan Becker, Kim Barrington Narisetti and Erzsi Deak Paris city guide for families traveling with kids. Family-friendly and budget conscious, this city guide reveals how to have fun with young children in France’s famed capital city. Conveniently organized in 12 sections, this sourcebook features fun things to do outdoors; activities geared for boys, girls, and the whole family; the locales of the best free playgrounds; the most kid-friendly sightseeing; hip inns that offer real value for the money; and great places to eat. A handy tips section provides a range of helpful tidbits such as embassy locations, seasonal temperature ranges, key phone numbers, listings of babysitting services, museum and store hours, which electrical adapters to use, and a conversion chart for children’s clothing sizes.

Period Pieces: Stories for Girls

Aunt Flo.
Doña Rosa.
That time of the month.
Being on the rag.
The curse.
Womanly time.

You might have a different name for it, but all of these words mean the same thing: your period. And the number of nicknames you can make up for your period is nothing compared to the number of ways you can feel about it. You may wonder if you’re the only girl you know who doesn’t have her period. Or you may feel excited about growing up. Are you confused about what’s happening inside your body? Or do you feel silly as you giggle with your mom or friends about the pamphlets you’re given in school? In these frank and often poignant new short stories, twelve stellar authors explore the anxiety and excitement of “becoming a woman.” Engaging, empowering, and sometimes hilarious, these stories show us girls who couldn’t be more different — and yet ultimately reveal that, in many ways, we are all the same.

PERIOD PIECES: Stories for Girls
Selected by Erzsi Deak & Kristin Embry Litchman
ISBN: 0066237963
HarperCollins Children’s Books US

Wild Strawberries

A short story by erzsi in the book, Lines in the Sand: New Writing About War & Peace (Frances Lincoln, 2003)

We wanted to lay a wreath of heather for Thea. The Dogwood trees were in bloom, their elliptical leaves casting wavy shadows across the trail winding above the city. Blossoms of white burst forth; shut tight for the long years. Trunks blackened and straining out from the hill like a crooked old man reaching for the sun. . . But Jez had stalked the enemy, unraveling their defenses. And now she was back. I hoped she’d stay…

Envelope Thief

in “They Only Laughed Later”

This collection of essays is the product of a series of ‘Women On the Move’ conferences, which brought together expatriate women from over twenty countries. Their concerns were mutual : to share experience in meeting the challenges that confront women who move to strange lands in pursuit of their own or their husbands’ careers. Some of this experience is resumed in this collection of essays, many of them written by published authors, all of whom were fresh from one or more assignments abroad. While there may seem precious little to laugh about in the midst of so much mobility, the truth is that hilarity lurks in the corners of most moves. Aspects of expatriate life evoked in the book include general culture shock, homesickness, language confusion, change of climate, adaptation to cultural differences, and repatriation.They Only Laughed Later is a pat-on-the-back and a keep-up-the-good-spirits to all the women who have made and are making the most of living abroad. It is a gentle prod, an outstretched hand, a go-for-it to those who find coping abroad scary and insurmountable. Each of the 30 essays is a heartfelt cameo taken from the real-life experience of an expatriate.

They Only Laughed Later
Europublic Press
ISBN 90-74440-12-6
Price: €14.95