Guest Post: Abigail Hing Wen on Character Development the Brutally Hard Way

By Abigail Hing Wen

After twelve years of writing and hundreds of rejections as I learned to write, I can’t quite believe my first novel is coming out in just eight weeks.

My biggest struggle had always been my characters. I read dozens of character craft books and asked for advice from character gurus like Coe Booth and Sandra Nickel.

Even as a student at Vermont College of Fine Arts,

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Author Interview: P.J. Hoover on Writing (& Publishing) the Stories You Love

 

By Gayleen Rabakukk

Author P.J. Hoover‘s latest book, The Hidden Code (CBAY Books, 2019), is a fast-paced adventure thriller. From the promotional copy:

Eleven years ago, Hannah Hawkins’ parents disappeared while traveling abroad. Presumed dead, Hannah and her uncle are shocked when a letter from her mom arrives right after Hannah’s sixteenth birthday.

By piecing together cryptic hints from the note and other clues left behind,

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Author Interview: Nikki Grimes on The Power of Words

By Traci Sorell

Memoir is one of my favorite genres to read. When Nikki Grimes shared some poems from hers last summer, I knew I must read Ordinary Hazards (Boyds Mills & Kane, 2019), the entire book.

Written in verse, her words captivated me much as the act of writing did her at an early age. The acclaim she’s already received in starred reviews and from fellow powerhouse creators speaks to the truth telling found within its pages.

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New Voices: Natasha Diaz & Kendra Fortmeyer, YA Debuts, Draw on Personal Experience

By Stephani Martinell Eaton & Gayleen Rabakukk

Today we welcome two debut YA authors with powerful stories grown from personal experience. Natasha Diaz‘s novel, Color Me In (Delacorte, 2019) explores the meaning of friendship, the joyful beginnings of romance, and the racism and religious intolerance that can both strain a family to the breaking point and strengthen its bonds. Hole in the Middle (Soho Press,

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Author-Agent Interview: Ann Rose of Prospect Agency

By Gayleen Rabakukk

Ann Rose is the author of two YA novels and an agent with the Prospect Agency, where she represents middle grade and young adult authors.

You’re a writer and an agent. How did you come to literature for young readers?

Years ago, my niece had asked me to read books with her. None of her friends were really readers and she wanted to have someone to chat with about what she had been reading.

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Guest Post: Amy Rose Capetta & Cori McCarthy Share Craft & Career Insights

By Cori McCarthy & Amy Rose Capetta

Hello dear readers (and, in many cases, writers)!

Amy Rose and I are here today to interview each other in celebration and—let’s be honest—promotion of our debut coauthored YA novel Once & Future (Jimmy Patterson, 2019), a genderbent King Arthur retelling in space, which is out now from Little, Brown.

We’re blessed to be doing a lot of interviews this release season,

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Guest Post: Padma Venkatraman on Golden Silence, Gilded Words

By Padma Venkatraman

On the flight home after a recent conference, I read Cynthia Leitich Smith’s Hearts Unbroken (Candlewick, 2018). It struck a chord in part because, although I was elated that so many people had read advanced reader copies (ARCs) of my novel The Bridge Home (Nancy Paulsen Books, 2019) and loved it, I also realized I’d been suppressing a sense of hurt as a result of unintentional microaggressions I’d witnessed.

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Survivors: Kerry Madden-Lunsford on Thriving as a Long-Time, Actively Publishing Author

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

In children’s-YA writing, maintaining an active publishing career is arguably an even bigger challenge than breaking into the field.

Reflecting on your personal journey (creatively, career-wise, and your writer’s heart), what bumps did you encounter and how have you managed to defy the odds to achieve continued success?

Bumps and defying the odds? Let’s see – where to begin? My first book, Offsides,

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New Voice: Dawn Quigley on Apple in the Middle

By Traci Sorell

This is a watershed year for the release of Native young adult novels.

From Eric Gansworth’s Give Me Some Truth (Scholastic, 2018), the followup to his If I Ever Get Out of Here (Scholastic, 2013), and Tim Tingle’s Trust Your Name (7th Generation, September 2018), the fourth in his No Name series, to the upcoming Hearts Unbroken by Cynthia Leitich Smith (Candlewick,

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Author Interview: Samantha Mabry on Being Unique & All the Wind in the World

By Gayleen Rabakukk

Samantha Mabry is the author of All the Wind in the World (Algonguin Young Readers, 2017). It was longlisted for the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature. From the promotional copy:

Sarah Jac Crow and James Holt have fallen in love working in the endless fields that span a near-future, bone-dry Southwest, a land that’s a little bit magical,

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