Laurisa White Reyes, our June mentor, is the Editor-in-Chief of Middle Shelf, a digital book review magazine for middle grade readers. She is also the author of three published novels: The Rock of Ivanore, The Last Enchanter and Contact, which comes out on June 23rd. A full-time mom of five children, Laurisa is currently pursuing her graduate degree in creative writing and also maintains the online blog directory Middle Grade Mania.
Along with Laurisa, workshop participants will be mentored by our usual cast:
Martina Boone, the workshop founder, loves reading and writing books about beautiful, vicious, magical worlds that intersect our own. She is the principal blogger at Adventures in YA Publishing, and the founding member of YA Series Insiders. COMPULSION, the first book of her Southern Gothic HEIRS OF WATSON ISLAND trilogy, will be available Fall 2014 from Simon and Schuster/Simon Pulse. You can reach her at AYAPLit [at] gmail dot com, on Twitter via@MartinaABoone or at http://www.martinaboone.com/.
Lisa Gail Green writes paranormal and fantasy. She is the author of THE BINDING STONE, the first novel in her DJINN series. She would most definitely have a werewolf for a pet if she weren't allergic. Find her at http://lisagailgreen.com or on Twitter as @LisaGailGreen.
Kimberly Sabatini is a former Special Education Teacher who is now a stay-at-home mom and a part-time dance instructor for three and four year olds. She lives in New York’s Hudson Valley with her husband and three boys. Kimberly writes Young Adult fiction and is represented by Michelle Wolfson of Wolfson Literary Agency. TOUCHING THE SURFACE was her debut novel. (Simon Pulse – Simon & Schuster, October 30, 2012) Stop by and see her on her website or on Twitter.
Susan Dennard is a reader, writer, lover of animals, and eater of cookies. She used to be a marine biologist, but now she writes novels–and not novels about fish, but novels about kick-butt heroines and swoon-worthy rogues. She lives in the Midwestern US with her French husband and Irish setter, and you can learn more about her crazy thoughts and crippling cookie-addiction on her blog or Twitter. Her debut, SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY, as well as the prequel, A DAWN MOST WICKED, and the sequel, A DARKNESS STRANGE AND LOVELY, are now available from HarperTeen!
Miriam Forster is a recovering barista and former bookseller who's obsessed with anthropology, British television and stories of all kinds. Her debut fantasy CITY OF A THOUSAND DOLLS was published by HarperTeen in February 2013. She lives in Oregon with her husband and her cat. Find her on her blog or on Twitter.
Erin Cashman's debut YA fantasy novel, THE EXCEPTIONALS, was named a Bank Street College of Education Best Children's Book. She primarily writes YA and middle grade fantasy while eating chocolate and drinking tea. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and three children. Be sure to catch her blog and Twitter feeds.
Sheri Larsen is a lover of the otherworldly, and her sweet spot is writing for the average tween/teen who's not so average. But she write picture books and middle grade as well. She is represented by Paula Munier of Talcott Notch Literary, and is also the creator of #WS4U!-a Facebook writer support group, and co-collaborator for Oasis for YA-my team YA site. Catch her on Twitter and on her blog.
Stasia Ward Kehoe is the author of YA novels THE SOUND OF LETTING GO and AUDITION, both published by Viking. She grew up performing at theaters along the eastern seaboard, then shifted from stage to page and has been writing fiction, marketing copy and educational materials for almost two decades! She holds a BA in English from Georgetown University and MA in Performance Studies from New York University, is represented by Catherine Drayton of Inkwell Managedment, and still enjoys choreographing the occasional musical. Stasia lives in western Washington state with her husband and four sons.Visit her online at on her website or Twitter.
Melanie Conklin is a writer, reader, and all-around lover of words and those who create them. Her debut novel for middle grade readers, Counting Thyme, will be published by Putnam & Sons in 2016. She lives in South Orange, New Jersey with her husband and two small maniacs. She's on the web at her website and on Twitter.
Kimberley Griffiths Little is an award-winning author of several Middle-Grade novels with Scholastic and her Young Adult trilogy FORBIDDEN will launch this Fall with Harpercollins after selling in a "significant" pre-empt. She grew up in San Francisco, but now lives in an adobe house on the banks of the Rio Grande with her chaotic, messy family. Please find her on on her website or on Twitter.
About the Book
Mira wants to die. She’s attempted suicide twice already and failed. Every time she comes in contact with another person, skin to skin, that person’s psyche uploads into hers. While her psychologist considers this a gift, for Mira it’s a curse from which she cannot escape.
To make matters worse, Mira’s father is being investigated for the deaths of several volunteer test subjects of the miracle drug Gaudium. Shortly after Mira’s mother starts asking questions, she ends up in a coma. Although her father claims it was an accident, thanks to her “condition” Mira knows the truth, but proving it just might get her killed.
"CONTACT is a page turner that will keep you guessing right along with Mira, right up until the last revelation. And it will make you reconsider the next time you wish you knew someone else’s secrets!" - Margaret Peterson Haddix, author of the Missing and The Shadow Children series