j.j. ferrer's photoJayne Jaudon Ferrer learned to read at four, got her first byline at nine, and interviewed music superstar Kenny Rogers at sixteen, so no one was surprised she grew up to be a professional writer. Ferrer’s background as an award-winning advertising copywriter and journalist, combined with her Southern warmth and wit, make her a popular speaker in classrooms, at book festivals, and at women’s events where, as she puts it, she enjoys “preaching the gospel of good words.”

Author of four books of poetry which have been published in multiple editions and languages, Ferrer’s most recent book is a how-to of classic games with instructions, variations, history, and fun facts woven in for added entertainment. The Art of Stone-Skipping and Other Fun Old-Time Games (Imagine Publishing) was created as a resource for schools, libraries, youth groups, scouting groups, teachers, activity directors, and families. There are ball games, brain games, car games, card games, games to play alone, with a partner, or with an entire group. “And not a single one requires batteries or electricity!” this mother of three declares proudly. “In this age of incessant electronics and social media that offers little face-to-face interaction, I think it’s vitally important our children discover that having fun doesn’t require an ‘on’ button, and that they learn the many valuable team-building and problem solving skills that come from playing games.”

A native of central Florida who now lives in Greenville, South Carolina, Ferrer has fond memories of playing Red Rover, Drop the Handkerchief, Leapfrog, and London Bridge during her days at Wauchula Elementary. “Those games are timeless,” she says, “and wholesome, because they get kids moving and active.” Other games, such as scavenger hunts and parlor and card games, are as entertaining for adults as they are for children, offering easy opportunities for conversation and socialization as well as mental stimulation. “We should never stop playing games,” contends Ferrer, who confesses she would probably play spades nightly if her family were willing. “Games keep us young, keep us engaged, keep us sharp. No prescription can do that.”

In addition to her penchant for games, Ferrer is passionate about poetry. For the past three and a half years, she has hosted Your Daily Poem in an effort to help those who think they don’t like poetry to find some poems they do like. “You can’t just categorically hate poetry,” she insists. “Ginger Andrews and William Wordsworth are about as similar as jacks and jump rope. I want people to realize that poetry is every bit as diverse as the NFL—the players just make a whole lot less money!”

Visit Jayne Jaudon Ferrer online.

Books by J.J. Ferrer