This event will be held on YouTube.
While these writers take inspiration from a wide diversity of experiences, all have been compelled to portray the world around them. This panel will discuss the challenges and benefits of taking from real life in order to write fiction. These novels are peaks into a variety of realities: an HIV positive Brazillian teenage boy, an American girl thrown into the world of K-Pop. We will discuss what it means to take on topics like cults, suicide, and school schootings. And with reality changing so rapildiy around us, what role does fiction play in helping us understand the world?
DEBORAH WILES is the author of several highly acclaimed books, including the beloved Love, Ruby Lavender and two National Book Award finalists–Each Little Bird That Sings and Revolution. Her first picture book, Freedom Summer, received the Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award. She is also an NAACP Book Award finalist, E.B. White Award winner, Golden Kite Award winner, Jane Addams Peace Award Finalist, and recipient of a PEN Phyllis Reynolds Naylor Working Writer Fellowship. Her newest book is the YA novel Kent State. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia. You can visit her on the web at deborahwiles.com, follow her on Instagram at @deborahwiles_ or on Twitter at @DeborahWiles101.
BILL KONIGSBERG is the author of six books for young adults, which have won awards including the Stonewall Book Award, the Sid Fleischman Award for Humor, and the Lambda Literary Award. Bill lives with his husband, Chuck, and their two Labradoodles, Mabel and Buford. Please visit him online at billkonigsberg.com and @billkonigsberg.
STEPHAN LEE is a YA enthusiast, ardent K-pop fan, and journalist. He currently works as Senior Editor at Bustle after a five-year stretch covering books and movies at Entertainment Weekly. At EW, he traveled to Seoul for three weeks to write a feature about Korean entertainment’s world domination, interviewing K-pop idols Ailee, Tablo, and Tiffany Young of Girls Generation. He earned an MFA in Creative Writing at The New School.
LUCAS ROCHA is a librarian living in São Paulo, Brazil. He received his MS in information science from Fluminense Federal University in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Where We Go From Here is his first novel.
KATRIN VAN DAM earned a degree in theater studies from Yale University and has worked in children's media and entertainment for more than 20 years. She is an avid theatergoer, reader, and cook, and loves to throw dinner parties with her husband in New York City. This is her first novel. Find Kat online at katrinvandam.com.