The Reading Culture Welcomes John Schu

author John Schu
Masthead Waves

John Schu’s entire life has been shaped by books. As a kid, he fell in love with Shel Silverstein. Emily Dickinson comforted him as he was battling an eating disorder. And “The One and Only Ivan,” well, that book changed his life.


The powerful impact books have had on his life inspired him to dedicate his life to sharing this power with everyone he can. His career as an educator led him to the library, and the library led him across America. Now, he has started a new career as a writer of stories himself.


John made his debut with "This is a Story," followed by "This is a School" and "The Gift of Story." However, in his latest work, "Louder Than Hunger," he bravely delves into a new realm of vulnerability. This semi-autobiographical tale draws from the most challenging period in his life, navigating the depths of his battle with anorexia.


In this episode, Mr. Schu, as in Mr. Schu Reads, tells us about the transformative books and authors that shaped his life. He explains how some of those stories helped him, and some actually harmed him. We’ll hear how he became an author, about the emotional toll of writing “Louder Than Hunger,” and how one transformative book almost put him in debt.


John's journey is a testament to the power of literature to shape our lives in profound ways.

For John Schu, that power has become a lifelong passion. His energy and deep love for books are infectious and will leave you wanting to get cozy with all of your favorite reads!


For his reading challenge, Story Within a Story, John invites us to read as many of the books featured in "This Is a Story" as possible. Get lost in these stories and remember to share them with someone you love. Beanstack clients, you will find this reading challenge ready to activate on your site and to share with your community. 


This week’s featured Beanstack librarian is Amanda Maslonka, an educator for 26 years and currently an elementary school librarian with Pasadena ISD. She shares about a unique program at her school to get parents and caregivers excited about reading aloud to their kids. 


Listen to the full episode, "The One and Only John: Mr. Schu Turns His Heart Inside Out,” on Apple, Spotify, Podbean,  Amazon Music, or wherever you get your podcasts. Like what you hear? Please leave a 5-star review, subscribe, and share with someone who will enjoy it!


Follow the podcast on Instagram @thereadingculturepod to see reels of our guests, and subscribe to our newsletter at to watch bonus content, get more intimate background stories, and learn about upcoming giveaways! #readingculturefam (for life!)


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