Beyond Gossip Girls: An Evening With Young Adult Authors

Wednesday, July 29, 2009, 7pm

@ Asian American Writers’ Workshop
112 West 27th Sttreet #600 (btwn 6th and 7th Ave)
New York, NY

$5 suggested donation

Books and films for young adults have exploded onto the scene recently with the success of the Twilight series, Gossip Girl, the Harry Potter series, and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. How do teenagers of color fare amid this explosion? What is it like to try to publish works with multicultural characters or characters of color in an industry clamoring for the next Twilight?

Join us for a reading and discussion with young adult novelists Neesha Meminger (author of Shine, Coconut Moon) and Sheba Karim (author ofSkunk Girl). Meminger and Karim deal with issues ranging from the Sikh experience post-9/11 and single parenthood to body image and Muslim American identity, while providing cohesive narratives of South Asian American adolescences and their growing pains.

Both authors will read from their new novels and discuss their different paths to publication and writing for a teen audience. Book signing and reception to follow.

Neesha Meminger was born in Punjab, India and grew up in Toronto, Canada. Her writing has appeared in anthologies, journals, the Village Voice, and various online magazines. She is a graduate of the MFA program at the New School For Social Research. Meminger is a longtime advocate for the rights of women, children and youth, people of color, and the LGBT communities. Shine, Coconut Moon (Margaret K. McElderry Books/Simon & Schuster 2009), her first novel, has been nominated as a Best Books for Young Adults pick by the American Library Association’s Young Adult Library Services division. Meminger lives in New York City with her husband and their two children.

Sheba Karim was born and raised in Catskill, NY. She is a graduate of the New York University School of Law and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in 580 Split, Asia Literary Review, Barn Owl Review, DesiLit, EGO, Kartika Review, and Shenandoah. One of her short stories was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her young adult novel, Skunk Girl (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), was published in 2009. Karim currently lives in New York City with her husband.

Author photograph by Anjali Bhargava