Lifting up the carpet and looking behind the curtains


~ post by Willa & Emily of Teen Press Corps

I Made You A Mixtape

Authors: Sarah Dessen, Lauren Myracle, Sara Farizan, Trish Doller, Leila Howland, Julie Murphy

I Made You A Mixtape was a panel bursting with jokes and eloquent words. Debut author, Sara Farizan had the crowd bursting into laughter periodically. Sarah Dessen brought her years of experience to the table, creating an interesting array of answers to the questions.

When asked about what should come first in stories, Trish Doller, author of Something Like Normal and Where the Stars Still Shine, said, “Characters come first. Travis came roaring into my head. Callie, on the other hand,” the main character in Where the Stars Still Shine, needed some coaxing.

Sarah’s answer surprised many. “I wouldn’t say I love writing.”

Even more shocking, Lauren Myracle agreed. She added, “Now, I’m not in a mindset for writing. While I was a kid, I always was.”

Another topic that came up was how the authors deal with more scandalous or controversial topics in their novels. Lauren Myracle (whose newest book is, The Infinite Moment of Us) summed her thoughts up by saying, “I want to lift up all the carpets and look behind all the curtains. I want to write it all.”

Negative reviews are something authors always struggle with. Leila Howland, author of Nantucket Blue, explained that the negative ones really do hurt; but, if they’re constructive and she can learn from, it then it was worth it.

Sara Farizan, author of If You Could Be Mine, started her answer with, “I’m a fragile flower.” She went on to explain that she appreciates the fact that people even spend time with the book, bad criticism or good. “If we all worry about what people think, then we wouldn’t get anything done. We’d just sit inside and cry, and that’s not fun unless you have a good soundtrack.”