Wednesday Q&A with author, Erin Entrada Kelly

Next up on Moontrug’s Wednesday Q&As is MG author, Erin Entrada Kelly, whose debut, BLACKBIRD FLY, is out on March 24th. We’ve got a bio and book blurb at the end of the post but right now we’re skipping straight to ogres…


1. You wake up to find a massive ogre in your bedroom. If you had to choose one MG character to fight him off who would you choose and why?
Wataru Mitani from Brave Story. Wataru is quiet and unassuming and he always has good intentions. But he’s also brave and fights for what he believes in. That’s the best kind of hero, in my opinion.


2. Having defeated the ogre, you find that your car doesn’t start. Bummer. Would you rather ride a dragon or a unicorn to work? Why?
The unicorn. It’d be a smoother ride, don’t you think? Dragons are too spikey and fiery.


3. After arriving at work late, your boss asks you what your most embarrassing childhood memory was. You have to tell him. 
When I was in sixth grade, my math teacher caught me passing a note to a boy. I can’t remember the boy’s name, but I remember what the note said: “Are you going with anyone? My friend Tonya thinks you’re cute.” The teacher confiscated the note and read it in front of the class. In hindsight, it may have been more embarrassing for Tonya and the Boy. But it was embarrassing for me, too.


4. You’re pretty fed up now so when a time machine appears offering to take you to any historical event, you agree. Where do you go and why?
I love history! So my head spins thinking of all the possibilities—the moment Joan of Arc met the Dauphin, the Chicago’s World Fair of 1893, the crowning of Queen Elizabeth I, Shakespeare at the Globe, Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel, the eruption of Vesuvius, the landing of Magellan in the Philippines. But after thinking about it—probably too much—I’m not sure I would want to witness any of these events first-hand. One of the things I love about history is its mystery. (Hey, that rhymed.)


5. There is light at the end of the tunnel. As a Fearless Fifteener, your debut is out this year. Tell us about your book in 15 words or less.
A novel for all the outsiders, outcasts, and dreamers.



Blackbird Fly

Apple Yengko knows what it’s like to be different. She has a weird Filipino nickname, she’s the only Asian at her school, and she’s obsessed with the Beatles instead of boys. But her life doesn’t truly fall apart until she finds out she’s listed on the Dog Log—the list of the ugliest girls in school—and her friends abandon her. Suddenly she’s a social pariah. The boys bark at her in the halls and the girls turn the other way. Apple dreams of escape and resents everything about her culture, including her mother. Gradually, Apple learns that music can save your soul,  new friendships can come from unexpected places, and mothers are full of surprises.


Erin Kelly

Erin Entrada Kelly was raised in south Louisiana, but now lives in the Philadelphia area. She’s been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Philippines Free Press Literary Award for Short Fiction. She grew up listening to her father play the Beatles—specifically, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. | @erinkellytweets