About the Debutante Ball

The Debutante Ball, established in 2007, is a group blog for authors making their debut in the literary world. We are now in our twelfth season of celebrating up-and-coming authors. Former Debs include bestsellers in the genres of women’s fiction, mystery, literary fiction, nonfiction, young adult, and more.   Click on any of the photos above to learn about The Debutante Ball Class of 2019 and their books. Read about the bestselling…

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The signs of a skilled editor

Usually when I submit an essay or short story for publication to a literary magazine or anthology, and it’s accepted, I only hear from the editor with an acceptance email and a permission to publish form attached. But when I submitted the essay, “The World I Didn’t Know Existed” to Inspire Press for the publisher’s Inspire Forgiveness anthology a few years ago, I got something entirely different. I got a…

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[News Flash] October 20, 2019

Thank you so much to yesterday’s guest, Valerie Valdes! If you haven’t already, enter the #DebBallGiveaway to win a copy of Chilling Effect and an adorable companion fridge magnet. You can enter by sharing our post on Facebook and/or retweeting the following tweet (make sure you follow @DebutanteBall on Twitter too!): Interview with Valerie Valdes, author of CHILLING EFFECT @DebutanteBall #ClassOf2020 #guest #author   News from the Class of 2020…

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Interview with Valerie Valdes, author of CHILLING EFFECT

I am thrilled to welcome Valerie Valdes to The Debutante Ball. We attended Viable Paradise together in 2016. Valerie will be giving away a copy of her novel, Chilling Effect, with an absolutely adorable fridge magnet — see below! Valerie Valdes lives in an elaborate meme palace with her husband and kids, where she writes, edits and moonlights as a muse. She enjoys crafting handmade bespoke artisanal curses and admiring…

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My Desert-Island Top 5 Books (That Influenced Me)

To paraphrase Nick Hornby, My desert-island, top-five most memorable books in chronological order: 1. Escape to Witch Mountain Tony and Tia were different. (Didn’t we all feel that way as kids?) They could both read minds and had telekenisis – they could move objects with their minds. That was a talent I tried to practice as I suffered silently at the dinner table. Instead of paying attention to what was…

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The wandering muse and the willing vessel

I really love authors who speak candidly about the writing and creation process. I read fiction ravenously. I find that I’m always amazed at the different worlds I am able to slip into thanks to authors’ imagination and skill. And even though I have followed into their profession, I still wonder, how do they do it? Are their minds just different than other people? Do they have to be in…

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Let’s go back. All the way back.

When I think of the books and authors that have influenced me, I think back. Way back. Back further than that. All the way to the beginning, really, because there’s nothing like the high you get from reading when you’re young. I think that’s one of the highs we chase as adult readers—the feeling we got way back when while staying up late, hiding under the sheets with a flashlight,…

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“I Want to Write Like That”: The Authors that Inspired Kathleen’s Debut

After I read Celeste Ng’s debut, Everything I Never Told You, I started thinking about writing fiction for real. It wasn’t that I had any delusions about writing quite as beautifully as Ng does. It was more that the story she told–of family members who loved each other, but didn’t really know each other–moved me so intensely. So, after I finished it, I started writing my own multi-generational (and highly…

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The Author Who Makes Me Cry the Most

It is not very often that a work of fiction makes me cry, but that’s what happened when I read Langston Hughes’ “Cora Unashamed,” a story in one of Hughes’ short story collections, which was made into a television film as part of the Masterpiece Theatre American Collection starring Regina Taylor and Cherry Jones. Cora is an African American housekeeper in the early 1900s isolated in an all-white town in…

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Interview with A.J. Hackwith, Author of THE LIBRARY OF THE UNWRITTEN

I am so excited to welcome A.J. Hackwith to The Debutante Ball. We attended Viable Paradise together in 2016.  A.J. Hackwith is a magpie of plots, bad ideas, and spite. She is a queer speculative fiction writer who writes contemporary fantasy as A. J. Hackwith and sci-fi romance as Ada Harper.  Her writing has appeared in Uncanny Magazine and various anthologies, and she’s an alumni of Viable Paradise workshop. She’s…

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