Today, I have the pleasure of sharing with my readers an interview with Suri Rosen, the author of a new YA novel, Playing with Matches. (You can find my review of the highly-entertaining Playing with Matches here.)
Suri piqued my interest in part because she has published her first book — a book with universal themes but with distinctively Orthodox characters and setting — with a mainstream, secular publisher. Most books with Orthodox themes tend to be published by Jewish publishers. I conducted this interview last week via email.
RK: This is your first novel, but as many of the reviewers have noted, you write with real skill. In particular, you handle Rain’s voice with humor and confidence. Have you published other genres before, taken classes, or to what else do you attribute your success?
SR: I’ve always been writing. (I cover this in detail on this website,’Dear Teen Me.’)
I read numerous books and blogs about writing and spent countless hours discussing technique with other novelists. But the most important aspect of becoming a publishable author – to me – is getting feedback. Giving a critique also sharpens your craft but getting a critique to me is the single most important factor in developing yourself as a writer.
And it can be brutal! Continue reading →