GCC Interview with Debbie Rigaud

Open mic cover I’m pleased to have Girlfriends’ Cyber Sister Debbie Rigaud here today with a quick interview to promote a book that sounds wonderful: OPEN MIC: RIFFS ON LIFE BETWEEN CULTURES IN TEN VOICES.  I think we can all use a bit more understanding and inclusion, don’t you?

OPEN MIC: RIFFS ON LIFE BETWEEN CULTURES IN TEN VOICES (Candlewick Press)  edited by Mitali Perkins.

  • Featuring the short story “Voila” by Debbie Rigaud

Listen in as ten YA authors use their own brand of humor to share their stories about growing up between cultures. Edited by acclaimed author and speaker Mitali Perkins, this collection of fiction and nonfiction embraces a mix of styles as diverse as their authors, from laugh-out-loud funny to wry, ironic, or poignant, in prose, poetry and comic form.

Rave Reviews for OPEN MIC:
“[Open Mic] will leave readers thinking about the ways that humor can be a survival tool in a world that tends to put people in boxes.” –Publishers Weekly

“Naomi Shihab Nye offers an eloquent poem about her Arab American dad, whose friendliness made him ‘Facebook before it existed.’ David Yoo, Debbie Rigaud, Varian Johnson and Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich also contribute stories to this noteworthy anthology, which robustly proves Perkins’ assertion that ‘funny is powerful.’”
Horn Book Magazine

“Teachers will find some powerful material here about how the young can become discomfited and find solace in their multifaceted cultural communities.
School Library Journal

Interview with Debbie Rigaud

What is your writing process like?
I find it increasingly helpful to have a complete (and somewhat detailed) story summary written up before I begin writing. This helps me set the pace for the plot. But admittedly, I’m more of a pantser by nature. My writing more often comes in spurts rather than during scheduled times.


What is the hardest part about the publishing process for you ad how do you get through it?
Editing can sometimes be a challenge for me. Recently, I had to go back and weave a subplot into my manuscript, and it took me forever to do. Every time I tried to buckle down and figure out how to run a new thread through the story, I hopped on that train to procrastination station instead. When I was running out of time, I dragged myself to a coffee shop, set up shop with my laptop, and tuned into jazzy, lyric-free music. That usually snaps me back into productive mode.


What are three things your hero can’t live without?
Of course Simon’s cell phone would be one. No matter how overprotective and suffocating her family can be, she’d still want to chat with them every day. The second thing is coffee. Simone was introduced to coffee at a very young age, so now it’s part of her diet. And the #3 item is her sense of humor, which she desperately needs in order to put her problems in perspective.


Any upcoming appearances/interviews, etc. you’d like to plug?
Yes on the “etc.” part of your question! TURFQUAKE, my first YA e-book, will be released later this year. The story follows one city girl’s reluctant (and awkward) switch to a suburban school at the same time her cousin from earthquake-ravaged Haiti moves in and faces greater challenges adjusting to life in the US.

Debbie Rigaud
Debbie Rigaud began her writing career covering news and entertainment for popular magazines. Her YA fiction debut, HALLWAY DIARIES/Kimani Tru was followed by the fish-out-of-water romantic comedy PERFECT SHOT/Simon Pulse. Since then, Debbie’s non-fiction essays have been published in anthologies IT’S ALL LOVE/Broadway Books and DEAR BULLY/HarperTeen. Her short story “Voila!” is featured in OPEN MIC/Candlewick Press, and TURFQUAKE, her first YA e-book will be released late 2013.

Published by luciennediver

Author of books on myth, murder and mayhem, fangs and fashion.

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