Thursday, September 11, 2014


Okay, I already blogged about this on my own site yesterday, but there was too much goodness to be contained in one post! I just had to share a few more of these wonderful quotes from beloved YA authors, which I found in the YALSA interview series "One Thing Leads to Another."

A.S. King:
My first six novels were written in a vacuum—on a farm in Ireland, living off the land, not caring all that much about this life I lead now—publishers, agents, critics, awards. It sounds a bit naïve perhaps, but I found and needed writing as an escape from real life. I was struggling and I didn’t know what to do with it. So one day I sat down at a typewriter and the release was most important. Not therapy, but a need to express myself without anyone butting in and telling me how I felt or how I should feel or how my feelings were wrong, etc. Those novels (along with others) live in a drawer as a reminder of that time, and as physical proof that I am writing for myself and not for others, which is how I want to keep it.

David Levithan:
I wrote Love is the Higher Law, which takes place in New York on 9/11 and in the immediate space after, and even though I was writing it within a decade of the events, it was already historical fiction. I think writing about gay lives now is like that. Not that things get banished easily to history, but that the here and now moves too fast to be photographed easily. We novelists must try to pin down the blur, and show what’s happening right now both for the right now, and for whatever comes next.

Melina Marchetta:
Trust your instincts. Most times my instincts are right and I still doubt them, but not as much as my teen self did. And learn to accept praise. I was hopeless as a teenager, and later I coped very poorly with all the attention I received for my first novel. A friend’s mum took me aside and explained that by not accepting the compliment, I was taking away pleasure from the person giving it. Now, I find it as easy as saying a thank you.

Shannon Hale:
I don’t remember being very good at anything as a teen. I was okay smart but didn’t get great grades. I loved theater but didn’t get cast in significant roles. I loved writing but didn’t produce anything noteworthy. I feel like those years for me were a battleground. I learned a lot and got bruised and challenged and discovered my passions, but they were not a time for me to shine. At the time it sucked, but objectively I’d rather not peak in high school.

For more from this great series, both past posts and new ones, please visit YALSA's website.

1 comments:

Sarah Wedgbrow said...

These are excellent, Kristan! LOVE it. Now heading over to your site...

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Stephanie, Ingrid, Sarah & Kristan — we read, write, discuss and celebrate Young Adult lit.


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New House 5: How A Dorm Becomes A Home
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