Megan Jacobson’s YA debut Yellow
is one of our favourite YA novels of 2016 so far.
It’s a beautiful story that really comes alive through its supernatural element, as the protagonist Kirra communicates with a ghost through a broken phone booth.
Truly, though, we want to thank our incredible #LoveOzYA authors for coming up with such inventive and enjoyable storylines that push readers to think a little deeper about their lives and the impact they have on the world around them.
Australian YA truly is the best YA, and we know many of you out there will agree with us.
1. What was you favouite book growing up and why?
I adored Melina Marchetta's Looking for Alibrandi
– it was the first Aussie book I studied in school. I loved being able to hear an Australian voice, and I related to the high school politics depicted and the struggle to fit in and find your place in the world. Josie's strength gave me strength.
2. If you could invite three fictional characters to dinner who would they be?
Jane Eyre and Antoinette/Bertha from Wide Sargasso Sea
, just so Jane could get some realtalk regarding Rochester before she shacks up with a guy who thinks it's cool to lock his wife in a freaking attic. And Papa from The Book Thief
so he could play the accordion and bring a little kindness.
3. What is your favourite part of the #LoveOzYA community?
I've been overwhelmed by how inclusive and supportive it is. Readers are so lovely in reaching out to you, their words make everything better when you're having a bad writing day, and the authors are so generous and supportive with their advice and just generally being awesome friends. People say you should never meet your heroes lest they disappoint, but through this community I've met my literary heroes and they're even better in person.
4. What would you tell your eighteen year old self?
That bellybutton ring? Yeah, it'll give you a scar for life. But mostly, stop worrying about achieving everything *now*, life is much longer than eighteen years. Breathe. Learn. Remember that growing takes time.
5. If you could pick the next big 'trend' in YA fiction, what would you choose?
Political speculative fiction, in the vein of 1984
, The Handmaid's Tale
, and Fahrenheit 451
6. Who inspires you? (Doesn't have to be other writers)
As someone who hated high school science, Ted Talks and the Internet has sparked a passion for (very basic) quantum physics. I'm humbled by the minds of Einstein, Hawkings and Sagan, and how they let themselves imagine the seemingly impossible. They highlight the importance of creative thinking in a society that doesn't really encourage dreamers.
7. What YA book absolutely needs to be adapted into a film?
My Sister Rosa
by Justine Larbalestier would make a creepy as heck thriller. What's not to love about a ten year old psychopathic girl?
8. What's the best #LoveOzYa book you've read in the last twelve months?
It's been a bumper crop of Aussie YA releases this year so it's hard to choose one, but I adored Summer Skin
by Kirsty Eager, and Frankie
by Shivaun Plozza. OK, that's two, but I could honestly rattle off a dozen!
9. What's your number one tip for would be writers?
Read widely, and critically. Figure out what you think works and why, and what stories don't work, and why. Mostly though, it's so simple, but just write
. Write and write and write. Play around with language and cadence and style and throw everything out there and stomp around in it until you find in that mix a voice that starts to feel like you. Write fearlessly.
10. How would you summarise your latest book in 25 words or less?
Shy, troubled, fourteen year old Kirra makes a pact with a teen ghost – she'll solve his murder if he helps turn her life around.