Surly Questions is back again with YA author Rachel Desilets. Her recently released novelette, Hipstopia, is available now! Thanks for taking the time, Rachel!
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I wrote my first short story in 4th grade. I didn’t understand how dialogue worked, so I ended up with a giant block of text and quotes everywhere. My mother saw it and (as the English teacher in the family) corrected everything I was doing wrong. I’ve written a lot of beginnings, never to visit the story again.
In 2011, I decided it was now or never and wrote a novel in a week. During NaNoWriMo, I finished novel number two. They were both terrible, but the fact is: I finished. That’s when I knew I could actually do it. That’s when I started taking myself more seriously as a writer.
Tell us about your debut YA novelette, Hipstopia.
Hipstopia originally started out as a joke through a twitter conversation. But once I started to think about it, I couldn’t get the characters out of my head.
Hipstopia is the city that formed after the Hipster uprising. Murphy led the revolution, kicking out everyone who believed in corporate personhood. It’s told from Jay’s perspective – and he tries to be the perfect hipster, the right-hand man to Murphy. It’s a coming-of-age story, where Jay makes plenty of realizations about himself, Murphy, and Hipstopia.
You write about Young Adult literature for the Examiner. What is it that drew you to YA, as compared to other genres?
What does your typical writing day look like?
What has been the most rewarding thing about connecting with other writers through social media?
What’s the best piece of writing advice you ever received?
The Unanswerable is the first in a conquel series called The UnSeries. Matthew is trapped in New York City during a mutated ebola outbreak with his wife and son. They have to try to navigate the city, which has devolved into absolute chaos. It’s dark with just a sliver of hope.