readergirlz is a literacy and social media project for teens, awarded the National Book Foundation's Innovations in Reading Prize. The rgz blog serves as a depot for news and YA reviews from industry professionals and teens. As volunteers return full force to their own YA writing, the organization continues to hold one initiative a year to impact teen literacy. All are welcome to "like" us on Facebook!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Story Secrets: THE HEART IS NOT A SIZE by Beth Kephart + Giveaway!

Can I tell you how much I love Beth Kephart? I haven't even met her in person, but she is one of the kindest writers I know. She encourages others and talks writing and crows and tells truthful stories straight from the heart, not to mention the recipient of many writing awards. And she was readergirlz's first Author-In-Residence!

So I am very pleased to interview her about her latest, THE HEART IS NOT A SIZE, which releases at the end of this month!

Welcome, Beth!


THE HEART IS NOT A SIZE is the story of two best friends who join other teens on a good will trip to a squatters village in Juarez, Mexico. Each friend harbors a secret. The secrets put these friends at risk. In a heat-baked town among wholly impoverished people, decisions have to be made.

Like most of my books, HEART erupts from real life. In this case, the starting point was a good will trip that I, along with my husband, son, and some two dozen others, took to Juarez in the summer of 2005. We were there to build a community bathroom and to get to know the people. I arrived with my camera and fell in love with the people we met and the kids with whom we’d traveled. I took photo after photo. I published two photo essays. Still, it wasn’t enough—I wanted to think more and harder—and as I created my two key characters, Georgia and Riley, I gave them challenges that I myself have struggled with: a propensity to panic, and (in my teens and early 20s) anorexia...

Read the rest for a chance to win a copy of THE HEART IS NOT A SIZE!


Melissa Walker said...

I love Beth! Thank you for sharing her secrets! I want more.

Shelf Elf said...

Like all of Beth's books, HEART is a story that opens up the world to you. I loved it.

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