by Kate Jarvik Birch
Publisher: Bloomsbury Spark
Release Date: April 15th 2014
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult
One People. One Union. One Future.
Wynne’s entire life is dictated by the Union: the clothes she wears, the books she reads, even the genes she inherited. And like every other girl in the Union, Wynne dreams of being chosen as a Carrier on her 16th birthday—one of the elite selected to carry the future generation within her womb. Wynne and her best friend Odessa are certain they will both make the cut, but when Odessa is chosen and whisked off to a life of privilege, Wynne is left behind to work as an assistant, delivering perfectly planned babies for the Union.
As Odessa slips deeper and deeper into the role of Carrier, Wynne begins to see the Union for what it really is: a society that criminalizes the notion of love, and forbids words like mother and family.
For the first time in her life, Wynne is faced with a choice: submit to the will of the Union, or find a way to escape and save Odessa before she is lost forever.
Are you a Planner or Pantster?
Very much a planner! In fact, one of my favorite parts of writing a novel is the initial plotting stage. Maybe it’s because I’m still totally smitten with my idea (SNIS: shiny new idea syndrome) and everything is chock-full of possibility! At this stage the idea is still perfect. Of course, once I start writing it’s exciting to see the story morph and change into something alive, but it never stays exactly the same as that initial seed of an idea.
How long does it typically take you to write a novel, start to finish?
It varies, but I’m usually pretty speedy with the first draft. It can take anywhere from a month and a half to three months. It’s the subsequent drafts that end up taking MUCH longer.
Do you work on one project at a time, or are you a multi-tasker?
I’m not the greatest multi tasker because I tend to get pretty obsessed with whatever idea I’m currently working on. Maybe it’s because for the book to really come alive it has to percolate inside my head 24/7. Who knows when a great idea is going to hit. It usually seems to happen in the shower or while I’m driving. But if the story hasn’t been given room to just sit quietly inside my skull, those epiphanies don’t tend to happen.
I’ve had to learn how to divide my energies while working on revisions with editors, but it’s still difficult for me.
Did you have to overcome any fears that first time you sat down to write?
Always! Every time! What if the words don’t come? What if I can’t make this scene work? What if I don’t have any original thoughts? Those first few minutes sitting down to write are always difficult, but I’ve noticed that it’s like warming up a muscle and after a few minutes those cold, hard feelings soften and melt away and the real writing can begin.
How many trunked books (if any) did you have before you were agented?
Completed novels… 2. But there were many, many attempts before that. Let’s just say it took about 16 years of real writing to get there.
Have you ever quit on an ms, and how did you know it was time?
I’m not sure I’ve ever REALLY quit on one. I’ve put them aside, but always with the promise that I’ll come back and try again some time.
Kate Jarvik Birch is a visual artist, author, playwright, daydreamer, and professional procrastinator. As a child, she wanted to grow up to be either a unicorn or mermaid. Luckily, being a writer turned out to be just as magical. Her essays and short stories have been published in literary journals including Indiana Review and Saint Ann’s Review. She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with her husband and three kids. To learn more visit www.katejarvikbirch.com
Enter to win an Amazon Kindle to celebrate the launch of Kate Jarvik Birch’s new YA dystopian novel, DELIVER ME, published by Bloomsbury Spark.