In high school, Barbara Park was voted the "wittiest" member of the senior class.
That sense of humor served her well when Park abandoned plans to become a teacher and turned to writing children's books.
who died Friday at 66 of ovarian cancer in Scottsdale, Ariz., sold more
than 55 million copies of a 28-book series starring Junie B. Jones, a
funny, talkative, trouble-prone school girl.
The series did well on USA TODAY's Best-Selling Books list; the best Junie B. showing was Junie B. Jones Is a Graduation Girl, which hit No. 6 in 2001.
a 2004 interview with USA TODAY, Park said as a elementary school
student in Mount Holly, N.J., "I was a good kid, but I was just very
chatty. Teachers were rarely entertained but occasionally a child was,
which was enough for me. Everything was so urgent. I needed to say it