Interview with Emma Sloley, Author of Disaster’s Children

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Yay for Emma Sloley, author of Disaster’s Children, a gripping dystopian novel recently published by Little a! An accomplished writer of short fiction and creative nonfiction, Disaster’s Children is Emma’s first book. She has the endorsements of some of the most prominent writers of literary fiction today. Jinmin Han calls Emma’s novel “lush” and “mesmerizing.” Rebecca Makkai says, “Sometimes a new author will sidle up and whisper in your ear,…

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

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

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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They Could Have Named Her Anything

Friday, August 2, 2019

  Stephanie Jimenez’s astonishing debut novel follows the evolution of a friendship between Maria and Rocky, two seventeen-year-old students at a private girls’ school. In order for this youthful friendship to take center stage, both characters need to be incredibly rich and real, and I was so impressed with how well Stephanie pulls this off. The two teenagers felt so real, to me, in fact, I found they reminded me…

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Interview with Lillian Li and Giveaway for NUMBER ONE CHINESE RESTAURANT

Saturday, June 1, 2019

    I’m so excited to be hosting author Lillian Li this week! Lillian Li is the author of the novel Number One Chinese Restaurant, which was longlisted for the Women’s Prize, the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, and an NPR Best Book of 2018. Her work has been published in the New York Times, Granta, One Story, Bon Appetit, and Jezebel. Originally from the D.C. metro area, she lives…

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Little Egg and Big Egg

Friday, May 10, 2019

      There aren’t a lot of Easter eggs in The Dream Peddler, but I can think of a couple of things that most readers wouldn’t pick up on—they’re just there for me, or for anyone who happens to have the specific knowledge you would require to get my meaning. The first is a small thing having to do with naming. I had a really hard time getting through…

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Interview with Crystal Wilkinson + GIVEAWAY For THE BIRDS OF OPULENCE

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Crystal Wilkinson was a guest lecturer my first semester of my MFA at West Virginia Wesleyan College. She spoke eloquently about circular, fragmented, and braided forms. She spoke about how Point of View can circle overhead like a bird, coming to rest over different people. I wrote it all down very carefully, because I was not particularly good at writing linear stories and it was the first time I heard…

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Interview with Christopher Meades + Giveaway of HANNA WHO FELL FROM THE SKY

christopher meades
Saturday, November 25, 2017

  This summer, I was lucky enough to attend BookExpo, the big trade show in New York where the year’s brightest literary stars are introduced. In a sea of articulate, fascinating speakers at the conference, one stood out to me: Christopher Meades. His book, Hanna Who Fell from the Sky, sounded like one I’d want to read under any circumstances but after hearing his story, I was desperate to get…

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[Guest Post] Jenny D. Williams THE ATLAS OF FORGOTTEN PLACES

Saturday, September 16, 2017

I’m so excited to have Jenny D. Williams on the Debutante Ball today! I first met Jenny in one of the many Binders sub-groups for novelists. She’s always funny, always kind, always helpful to other writers. And she’s incredibly talented. Jenny’s debut, THE ATLAS OF FORGOTTEN PLACES (St. Martin’s Press) is an amazing piece of work. Her prose is gorgeous, and this is a book that will resonate with you,…

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Interview with Kelly J. Ford + #DebBallGiveaway of COTTONMOUTHS

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Today on the Debutante Ball, I’m excited to welcome Kelly J. Ford, a fellow GrubStreet Writing Center instructor,  whose book COTTONMOUTHS completely blew me away. It also exposed me to a genre of literature that I wasn’t familiar with — Grit Lit, which is also sometimes called Rural, Country or Southern Noir, or Southern Gothic. The article I just linked explains a bit more: “It’s people using “weed and pills and sometimes meth….

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Interview with Jessica Chiarella + #DebBallGiveaway of AND AGAIN

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Today on the Debutante Ball, we’re chatting with Jessica Chiarella. Her debut novel, AND AGAIN, was one of the first books I read in 2016. It is a novel that still haunts me a year later, particularly in a world that seems increasingly fraught with difficult choices. The idea of starting over with a blank slate seems appealing, but as the characters in her novel discover, starting over may not always…

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