288: Find Your Community - Interview with Janae Marks

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By Gabriela Pereira. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Hey there word nerds!

Today, I have the pleasure of interviewing Janae Marks!

Janae is an award-winning children's book author living in Connecticut. She has an MFA in Creative Writing with a concentration in Writing for Children and Young Adults from The New School, and is an active member of the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). Her debut is the middle grade novel, From the Desk of Zoe Washington, which we’ll be discussing today.

Janae also happens to be one of my dearest writing besties. She’s known me since before DIY MFA was even a twinkle in my eye, like back when it was still just a “crazy idea” I was kicking around on my personal blog. She and I were also in the same thesis critique group so she has seen my writing in all its many forms: from the good, to the bad, to the… what the heck were you thinking, Gabriela?

One of my favorite things—one of the things that brings true joy to my heart—is when I get to introduce my favorite people to the word nerd community. I’ve known Janae for a long time; I know how much of her heart and soul she’s poured into this book and I am so excited for the world to discover Zoe Washington and this sweet, heart-felt middle grade novel.

Without further ado, welcome Janae! It’s so great to have you here.

In this episode Janae and I discuss:
  • How Serial and Making a Murderer inspired From the Desk of Zoe Washington
  • Aging a character down from YA to middle grade
  • Weaving serious, real-world issues into a middle grade story
  • Balancing parenting and writing
  • Different types of writing friends and communities
  • Finding a community-focused writing conference
Plus, her #1 tip for writers.

For more info and shownotes: www.diymfa.com/288

292 episodes