Sunday, September 29, 2013

Laura Bickle

Laura Bickle’s fiction for adults and young adults includes The Hallowed Ones, Embers, and Sparks. Her newest release is The Outside, a young adult thriller that received a Kirkus starred review.

From Bickle's Q & A with Jennifer Bielman:

Jennifer: How did you come up with the world in The Outside?

Laura: I live not too far from a large Amish settlement. When I was a little girl, my parents would take me to visit, and I was fascinated by a world very different than the one I lived in. I’d see Amish girls my age over the fence and wonder what their lives were like.

Some of that curiosity lingered, and I always wanted to revisit it in a story. It popped back into my head when I was writing about a catastrophic contagion. Considering all the incredible self-sufficiency the Amish apply in their everyday lives, it seemed to me that they would be uniquely well-equipped to survive a large-scale disaster.

Part of the book is loosely based in Amish country, and the parts beyond the settlement are inspired by the landscape of rural Ohio. Researching the Amish way of life was fascinating, but it was also a lot of fun to write what I knew about other parts of my home state.

Jennifer: What were the best and most challenging parts of writing The Outside?

Laura: My favorite part was getting the opportunity to boot my heroine, Katie, outside of her Amish community. Since she was a little girl, she yearned for a chance to experience life beyond the gate of her settlement. Now that the world has been devastated by a plague of vampires, she’s challenged to use her self-reliance in unexpected ways to survive. It’s really a case of “be careful what you wish for.”

The most challenging part for me is always...[read on]
Learn more about the book and author at Laura Bickle's website, blog, Facebook page, and Twitter perch.

Writers Read: Laura Bickle.

The Page 69 Test: The Outside.

--Marshal Zeringue