For What It's Worth

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Interview: Jennifer Hubbard - The Secret Year

The Secret YearAuthor Jennifer Hubbard is stopping by today for Author Snaphots. Jennifer's debut novel The Secret Year was one of my first reviews on this blog and my first 4 out of 4 rating. It's a beautiful story and you can read my review HERE

Synopsis: After his secret girlfriend's death, seventeen-year-old Colt finds the notebook she left behind, but he is unprepared for the truths he discovers about their intense relationship.
Karen: Do you have a ritual or superstition that you follow when it comes to your writing?
Jennifer: Not really. I like to be in my office with the door closed, music on, and a glass of water nearby, but I will write wherever I have to--including on trains, in waiting rooms, etc.

K: Is there a must have snack you need to have nearby while you’re writing?
J: I like to start an evening writing session with a bit of dark chocolate. At other times of day, I don't usually eat anything while I'm writing.

K: I think starting off with a bit of dark chocolate is a great way to start off anything!

K: What inspires you and you're writing?
J: I write the kinds of books I wanted to read when I was a teenager. I write about topics that I care about, situations that make me curious. The Secret Year was about coping with the loss of a secret, and rather obsessive, relationship. My upcoming book, currently titled Try Not to Breathe, is about how a person comes back from the brink of suicide. I have a short story coming out in May, "Confessions and Chocolate Brains," that's about dealing with flaws in yourself and in your relationship--in other words, what happens when the "perfect couple" isn't perfect after all?

K: The Secret Year was the first book I read from a male POV. I now search out books with either male point of view or at least alternating between the girl’s and the boy’s. Do you have any recommendations for guy POV books?
J: People ask about this so often that I've compiled a list of very recent books with male main characters (some first person, some third person)  HERE
But for books published before 2009, some of my favorites also include Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You (Peter Cameron), Slot Machine (Chris Lynch), Whale Talk (Chris Crutcher), Thaw (Monica M. Roe), Shift (Jennifer Bradbury), Looking for Alaska (John Green), and Geography Club (Brent Hartinger).

K: That is an extensive list Jennifer! Thank you so much for compiling it. I wasn't even aware that there were that many male POV books out there. You also included one of my favorites from last year: SPLIT by Swati Avashti.

K: How do you think book review bloggers have changed the landscape of promoting books & authors?
J: I think it's great that people are using their blogs to discuss books! I now find out about most of my new reads online. Many book bloggers have also been very supportive of the writing and publishing community by coming to events such as BEA, ALA, and author signings. One book blogger, Harmony, even organized a combination author-signing/fundraiser-for-libraries in her home state.
Because of online networking, there are greater opportunities than ever before for readers and writers to connect, as well as for readers to connect with one another. That's one reason this is a very exciting time for YA writers. Personally, I also welcome interaction on Twitter, where I'm @JennRHubbard.

K: I recommend following Jennifer on Twitter. She has very interesting interactive discussions about YA, writing and reading.

Thank you for joining me today Jennifer and please don't forget to check out  The Secret Year
- now available in paperback.

Where to find Jennifer:
Twitter: @JennRHubbard
Buy the book! The Secret Year


  1. Thanks for the intreoduction to Jennifer. You mention her Twitter page(?) are we able to follow her on Facebook?

  2. Petty Witter: I'm not on Facebook. I do blog:

    Thanks for interviewing me, Karen!

  3. awesome mini interview!! i didn't even realize this one was written from a male pov.