Happy Friday, guys!
We have a couple of AWESOME posts for you, beginning with our Q&A with Marieke Nijkamp, author of This is Where it Ends!
The interview is a part of the Meet the Newbs blog tour, an amazing tour that has been put together by Rachel at A Perfection Called Books!
Start off with her introductory post, and then read on for Marieke's thoughts on writing, reading and more!
A Q&A with Marieke Nijkamp
Author of This is Where it Ends
January 2016, Sourcebooks
First Day of School: January 5, 2016
Homeroom: Sourcebooks Fire
Grade: YA Contemporary
Extracurricular Activities: Creative Writing, Archery. Fencing. Yearbook, Gaming society
Favorite Class: Philosophy. History. Anything involving literature and languages. Math.
Favorite Quote/Motto: "We are all stories, in the end." -The Doctor
As someone who has known you since our days as Tildor cadets, it’s ridiculously awesome that I now get to interview you as a part of Meet the Newbs! Let’s get started with our questions!
It’s been a month and a half since your debut, and I have to ask: how are you feeling now that your book is out in the world? Excited? Elated? Focused on what’s coming next?
But I’m definitely also focused on what comes next. I can’t not write (trust me, I’m not very pleasant to be around if I’m not getting my words in) and I want to continue to tell stories.
Q: This is Where it Ends has been recognized as a timely look at school shootings, and the overall climate of gun violence in the United States.
I know you’ve discussed the origins/genesis of the books before in previous interviews, so let me ask: why now? Why do you think that people are reacting so passionately to your book, and what is it about the current geopolitical climate that you think is instigating that passion?
And that instigates not passion, but fascination. Frustration. Fear, even. All of those informed my writing the book, and I imagine they’ll also motivate readers. Along with a longing to understand—and find answers.
Q: Is there a specific reason why you chose to set the book in Alabama, verses another state?
That, and alphabetical order, of course.
Additionally, how did you do your research, to make sure that your characters reflected the diversity of the area?
Q: In a recent interview with School Library Journal, fellow We Need Diverse Books member Mike Jung mentioned that a lot of the books that were acquired after the inception of WNDB are still making their way through the pipeline.
How does it feel knowing that This is Where it Ends is helping to lead that charge? On a related note, what kind of impact has the WNDB movement had on your fellow 2016 titles?
And to know it’s here as part of a debut class with so many wonderfully inclusive books? Wow. There are so, so many exciting things happening among the 2016 MG/YA debut authors. Randi Pink’s INTO WHITE, for example. Audrey Coulthurst’s OF FIRE AND STARS. Roshani Chokshi’s THE STAR-TOUCHED QUEEN. Traci Chee’s THE READER. Jeff Garvin’s SYMPTONS OF BEING HUMAN. Laura Tims’s PLEASE DON’T TELL. Kali Wallace’s SHALLOW GRAVES. Heidi Heilig’s THE GIRL FROM EVERYWHERE. Rahul Kanakia’s ENTER TITLE HERE. Should I continue? Honestly, it’s an honor to be among them all. :)
Q: On a lighter note, let’s talk about some general writing questions! Are you a plotter or a pantser?
(I feel like I should know this about you, but I don’t think we’ve actually talked writing style before!)
Q: We’ve had the privilege of seeing your evolution as a champion of YA and a writer, from your championing of Tildor, to your work on YA Misfits, to just about everything I see you doing for fellow writers these days.
As you’ve built up all these years of experience, what’s one piece of advice about writing and publishing that you feel would be most beneficial to burgeoning writers who are looking to follow in your footsteps?
But beyond that – build your writing family, your community of friends and fellow word geeks. It’s so much better to be in this together, and having a support system is everything. I wouldn’t know where I would be without mine. <3
Q: And finally, what’s next for you?
Told you I was going about this alphabetically. :)
Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions, Marieke! :) And thank you to Rachel for helping to organize Meet the Newbs!
About the book!
(Admit it: you're dying to read this, if you haven't already!)
10:02 a.m. The students get up to leave the auditorium for their next class.
10:03 a.m. The auditorium doors won't open.
10:05 a.m. Someone starts shooting.
Told from four different perspectives over the span of fifty-four harrowing minutes, terror reigns as one student’s calculated revenge turns into the ultimate game of survival.
Goodreads | Barnes & Noble | Amazon
About the author: