Here is an interview with Deborah Kerbel. She is the Author of Mackenzie, Lost and Found.
1. How did you get the idea for Mackenzie, Lost and Found?
A friend of mine lit the spark of the idea in my head one day over lunch, talking about how her parents moved her from Canada to Israel when she was fifteen and how the experience changed her life. I was on the look-out for a new story idea at the time and this concept seemed like one with HUGE potential for drama, high emotion, and forbidden love. I went home and wrote the first chapter that same day.
2. Do you think that you’ll ever revisit Mackenzie or Nasir?
Yes! As far as I’m concerned, their story is not over. I’ve already started a small file and am slowly collecting ideas for the sequel. I’m in between manuscripts right now, so I might start writing it this Spring.
3. What are you currently working on?
My second YA is called Girl on the Other Side and it’s about two girls who go to the same school, but live in totally opposite worlds. Tabby is rich, pretty and the most popular girl in her class. Lora is smart, timid and the constant target of bullies. Although they’ve never been friends, a series of strange events causes their lives to come crashing together in ways neither could have ever imagined.
If all goes well, Girl on the Other Side will be hitting the bookshelves in Fall, 2009 (yay!). And I just finished the final draft of a new YA that is worlds apart from anything else I’ve ever written before. It’s called Bye-Bye, Evil Eye and -- I don’t even know the right way to describe it – it’s kind of a paranomalish mystery, comedy, romance! Lol - did that make any sense? You can read the first chapter on my website.
4. What advice do you have for teenage writers?
Have fun and live your ‘growing-up’ years to the max – because you’ll draw on these memories and experiences for the rest of your writing career.
5. What is easiest/hardest for you as a writer?
The easiest (and best) parts of being a writer are those moments when the characters start to take on an energy of their own and you, as the author, have to take a step back and let yourself get carried away on the arc of the story. That’s really magical.
The hardest parts for me are the revisions. Going back into the story, taking apart all the carefully woven threads, re-writing, and then tying all the threads back up again as seamlessly as possible. It can be painstakingly tedious.
6. What were some of your favorite books as a teenager?
God, that seems like so long ago! Even then, my literary tastes were pretty wide-ranging. Judy Blume was probably my favourite contemporary author back then (in the 80’s) but I loved reading classics too. The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand was a favourite of mine as was Watership Down and The Hobbit. On the trashier side, I adored the whole V.C. Andrews Dollanganger series -- and I’m not at all ashamed to admit it!
7. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Just a big thank you for inviting me to chat on your blog, Sarah! If you want to learn more about me or my books, you can visit my website at: http://www.deborahkerbel.com/. Good luck to all of you with the contest! And definitely write to me after you’ve read Mackenzie, Lost and Found – I love hearing from readers!