Kelly Parra is a YA writer who also maintains a fantastic and fun blog, "YA Fresh," with writer Tina Ferraro. Not only did Kelly agree to do a little Q&A for our blog bash, but she has ALSO offered a copy of her book, INVISIBLE TOUCH, as a giveaway to a randomly selected commenter on her post. So comment to enter for a chance to win!
Kelly is a Mexican-Filipino-Italian writer. Through her teen years, her nationality was many times a guessing game by new acquaintances and today she often writes her multicultural characters with the same experiences. She debuted into young adult fiction with the Latina novel GRAFFITI GIRL, a double RITA finalist. Her latest novel is the YA contemporary paranormal, INVISIBLE TOUCH published by MTV Books. Learn more about her and her books at kellyparra.com.
Blogs are a central part of the Bradford Novels universe. They are also, more and more, a central part of the YA-writing universe. When and why did you start blogging?
I first started blogging a couple of years before I sold my first book. Blogs were really taking off and I wanted a connection with other writers during my struggle to publication. After selling my first YA novel, GRAFFITI GIRL, I knew many romance writers at the time but I didn't know how I would connect with other YA readers. I had always felt a blog needed to give something to readers that they would be interested in. Not just about my own YA books but about other authors, and soon YA Fresh was born. Not long after it launched, I asked my fab critique partner, Tina Ferraro, if she would like to join me and luckily she did. It's been a great couple of years!
What's your favorite thing about blogging? As someone who coordinates between a variety of different blogs, how do you stay organized?
My favorite thing about blogging is the connection with other writers and readers! It's such a blast to share your likes and dislikes, and all the book gossip with your friends. I do coordinate between group blogs and guest blogs and it can get overwhelming at times. I'm a total list person and I write down dates to try and keep me sane. :)
What are the pros and cons of running a group blog, as opposed to blogging strictly on a personal site?
One pro of running team blogs is having others to share a variety of topics with a different spin to keep readers interested. I can't really think of a con—I feel group blogs work really well if organized. Blogging on your own can be a little boring and it's hard to bring something fresh to readers.
What's the difference between a blog and a diary? How confessional do you like a blog to get? What sort of blog posts most appeal to you? What are some of your favorite blogs (book or otherwise) out there right now?
Diaries are for the writer's eyes only! A blog can be read by hundreds of readers and can reach farther beyond. On YA Fresh, we try and keep it light. Blog posts that appeal to me are background news on writers and their books. Its so fun to follow a favorite writer through their writing journey. Some of my favorite blogs are: Teenfictioncafe.blogspot.com and YAWriters.blogspot.com.
GoldenGirl is full of scandals and exposed secrets. What was the biggest scandal at your high school? Did your classmates discover any of your deep, dark secrets?
There was always a scandal in high school—from fights to party stories, whatever topic that could keep the gossip going. I'm not sure if any of my dark secrets were whispered behind hands...nothing I can think of at the moment!
Sure, sure...So, what’s the worst thing you ever did to a friend? Are you still friends with her or him?
I started talking to an ex-boyfriend of one of my friends. They'd been broken up for a long time, and she told me it didn't bother her. But later down the road when I stopped talking to the guy my friend ended up back with him and admitted it had bothered her. I wish she would have told me, but then I should have just brushed him off. Friends stick around longer than dates! I run into her every once in a while and we still talk like years haven't gone by.
What are your most recent books? What new projects are you working on now?
My latest release is INVISIBLE TOUCH (MTV Books/October, 2008). The story is about a girl who sees "signs" or symbols on individuals and must piece the signs together in order to save them from unfortunate fates. TeensReadToo gave Touch the Gold Award of Excellence and bestselling author Laurie Faria Stolarz called it a blend of mystery, romance, and deep and dangerous secrets.
Right now, I'm stepping out of my comfort zone and writing an urban fantasy that takes place in the near future. It's been an exciting and fun challenge!
Thank you for letting me join in, Micol!