Nan Mercado, my editor, asked me the other day how I came up with Gaia’s voice and how I developed it, and I had no idea how to answer her. What’s strange is that I know Gaia inside and out. I know her personality, and how she talks, acts, and thinks. Her belongings have history. How she perceives her world and how that changes are all part of her, too. I know her so completely that when I wrote a little story about Gaia at… Continue reading
The law isn’t really called that, but since I’m already playing with fiction twists, changing the name is a satisfying place to start. The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 says about what you might expect it would: that insurance companies and employers can’t discriminate against anyone because of his or her genes. They can’t demand genetic info about people, or their families, when they’re deciding whom not to cover in policies or whom to employ. That’s the real law here in the U.S.
It’s just too… Continue reading
(Here’s a bit story about a character from Birthmarked when she was a kid.)
Gaia plugged the last jug with its stopper and tied the handle to the end of her pole. Once more, she tested the grip of the faucet in the great wall to be certain it was off tightly. Spilled water had absorbed into the dust already, making it a richer brown, and she messed her bare toes into it for the coolness before she lifted her yoke pole and balanced it over her shoulders.… Continue reading
Yesterday, I met up with Laura Toffler-Corrie, Ann Haywood Leal, Jame Richards, Sari Bodi, and Michaela MacColl for a panel at the Ridgefield Library in lovely Ridgefield, CT. The local kids were painting Halloween pictures on the local businesses and there were balloons everywhere, so it was a fun day on Main Street. About forty people came by to hear a bit of advice on writing and publishing,… Continue reading
I’m joining my friend Laura Toffler-Corrie and four other YA and MG writers at the Ridgefield, CT library this coming Saturday for a writers’ panel from 1:00-3:00. We’re ostensibly dispensing advice on the writing and selling of children’s books, but I suspect we’ll digress. I, for one, am far from an expert. Maybe I’ll get the easy questions, like what to do if your fingers get cold all the time when you’re typing.
In May, 2008, I wrote to three dozen literary agents to see if any of them would be interested in taking on Birthmarked, then called The Baby Quota. Here’s my initial email correspondence with Kirby Kim, who now represents me.
Dear Mr. Kim:
In a dystopian future, the world is divided between those who live inside the wall, and those, like sixteen-year-old midwife Gaia Stone, who live outside. It’s Gaia’s job to turn over her quota of infants to the authorities within the wall, until… Continue reading