We have author Kody Keplinger of “The DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend)” on the show today! The book was made into a major motion picture starring rising young actors. Kody’s take on teen drama is refreshingly original and hilarious.
I’m so excited to share her interview with you today! Kody is just as bubbly, outgoing, warm, and funny as I had hoped. We chat a ton about mentors and how they help shape your career, and how having one influenced Kody into the person and the writer she is today. Lots of workshop talk, crucial writing tips (the same lessons she teachers her writing students), personal triumphs and heartbreaks in the writing industry, and so much more!
Writers with a focus on writing young adult or middle grade books, this one’s for you!
Kody’s Recommended Books & Resources:
Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
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“Be okay with hearing the word ‘no’ and don’t let that stop you.”
“I knew that there was absolutely zero chance of me doing anything outside of the creative sphere.”
“If you want to do this, then do this.”
“Your back up plan shouldn’t be your first plan.”
What You’ll Learn From This Episode:
- The importance of having a mentor that has the courage to be truthful and how that can inspire you and your work
- Inspiration behind “The Duff”
- How to avoid miscommunication with your editor and remain on the same page about your writing project
- Kody’s outlining process
- How to decide which ideas are worth exploring for your next writing project
- Why every aspiring writer needs to attend a book signing
About That’s Not What Happened
It’s been three years since the Virgil County High School Massacre. Three years since my best friend, Sarah, was killed in a bathroom stall during the mass shooting. Everyone knows Sarah’s story–that she died proclaiming her faith.
But it’s not true.
I know because I was with her when she died. I didn’t say anything then, and people got hurt because of it. Now Sarah’s parents are publishing a book about her, so this might be my last chance to set the record straight . . . but I’m not the only survivor with a story to tell about what did–and didn’t–happen that day.
Except Sarah’s martyrdom is important to a lot of people, people who don’t take kindly to what I’m trying to do. And the more I learn, the less certain I am about what’s right. I don’t know what will be worse: the guilt of staying silent or the consequences of speaking up . . .
Learn more about Kody Keplinger
Kody Keplinger is the author of several books for kids and teens, including The DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) which was adapted for film in 2015. She’s the co-founder of Disability In Kidlit, a writing teacher in NYC, and an all-around nerd. Her next novel, Run, will be released in June 2016.