Author Christopher Paul Curtis did not publish his first book, The Watsons Go to Burmingham - 1963, until he was in his 40s. In fact, he never thought of himself as a writer until that time. The manuscript was rejected by the first publishing house he sent it to, but the second gave him a prize and published it. He knows that authors are very driven and that countless rejections are almost invariably involved when trying to get published, especially at first. Not good with rejection, he says he may not have persevered had that second publisher not believed in his work. The book went on to win a Newbery Medal and a Coretta Scott King Honor .