Happy Book Release day to “Girl in Pieces” by Kathleen Glasgow!
I was lucky enough to work with Kathleen the past couple of months and receive and ARC (Advance Readers Copy) of “Girl in Pieces”. I read it and fell in love with this book. It grabbed hold of my heart and I felt a true connection to this book.
I am thrilled about the books release and I cant wait to see readers with this book in your hands! Get your copy today!
Interview with author of “Girl in Pieces”; Kathleen Glasgow
Q: What inspired or motivated you to write “Girl in Pieces”?
K: I wrote Girl in Pieces for the girls and boys who wear long sleeves. For the girls and boys who sit in their rooms at night, listening to music, drawing, writing, or just being silent, trying to make themselves smaller and smaller. Depression isn’t something that gets ‘fixed,” but it can be managed in a variety of ways.
Q: Can you talk a bit about your experiences with depression and self-harm?
K: I struggled for a long time with depression, self-harm, and the inevitable shame that accompanies both of those things. But there isn’t any shame in feeling sad, or lost, or lonely. Why should there be? Those are all spectacularly human things to feel. Why are you made to feel weak if you display emotion? I’m hoping Girl in Pieces lends some insight into what happens when you fall down a hole that deep.
Q: You have said that a lot of this book was built from your own experiences. Did that ever make writing this book hard?
K: Sometimes, for sure, yes, absolutely, 100%. But I felt that if I was going to write about this topic, I needed to be honest. This isn’t a topic that should be romanticized. This isn’t a topic that should have a “she’s miraculously healed by therapy or boy-love” ending. But Charlie does get to a better place, emotionally, and I think that stays true to life.
I drew on my own emotional experiences, but not on actual life experiences—there’s a difference. My story is my own, just like yours is yours, and I gave Charlie her own story, too.
Q: What do you want people who have gone through similar things to take away from this book? What about those who haven’t?
K: I want people who’ve gone through what Charlie goes through to understand that they are not alone, that there are people who want to help you and there are people who are like There is, literally, some thing or someone in this book that will ring true for everybody who reads it. Have you had your heart broken by a lover? It’s in there. Had trouble with your parents? It’s in there. Felt lonely, lost and unseen? Ding, ding, ding. Are you a parent with a teen who’s having a rough time? You are in this book!
Q: You mentioned music is a big part of “Girl in Pieces”, were there any songs or bands in particular that had a lot of influence?
K: Music has been a sustaining influence for me ever since my mom slipped Paul Simon’s “Greatest Hits” on the turntable on chilly winter in Pennsylvania. Music has the power to transform our feelings and dreams and it’s such a big part of Charlie’s memories of her father and of her relationship to her feelings and friends. There is a Spotify playlist for the book! You can hear songs that are mentioned in the book and songs that each character might listen to. https://open.spotify.com/user/kathglasgow/playlist/0SAo3cUFr2tZOCT1NUg6cW
Q: So publishing this book; what was that experience like? Were there any trials or concerns for you in doing so?
K: Publishing is a wild ride. Finding an agent, revising, hoping for the best, going out on submission. I had no idea about any of it and I loved every minute.
Q: Fox31 Denver claimed in an article that, “Family therapists [have] said [that] over the past 10 years, they have seen a dramatic increase in the number of kids deliberately cutting themselves-.” According to TeenRehabCenter.org, “Around 1 in 5 teens aged 13–18 live with a mental health condition [which can lead to] using substances like drugs or alcohol, or [even] self-harm in other cases.”
A lot of young adult literature has recurring themes of strong female or male heroines overcoming adversity, family issues, and even trials brought on by fantasy circumstances. Do you think it’s important, based on the rising statistics that more and more authors begin to write books addressing the issue in your book?
K: Yes, I do. When I was a teenager, there were no books (that I knew of) on the library shelves where I could find my particular situation. Later, when I was in my twenties, those books started to come out, like Speak, and Girl, Interrupted, and I devoured them because I needed them. I needed to see myself and know I was not alone, that my emotions were valid. I’m so happy now to see so many books addressing the topics of depression and mental illness in teens.
Q: Last but not least, and this is a more fun question, which character did you enjoy creating or writing the most? Which one was the hardest?
K: Ha! Well, I love Charlie, of course. She has my heart. I really liked writing Blue and Ariel. I would have to say writing Riley was very difficult, because I had to balance making him seem charming with what maybe is really happening underneath the surface, which Charlie doesn’t see at first, because she’s been unloved for so long, and she’s so in need of care.
About the Author
“I live in Tucson, Arizona and write for The Writer’s Almanac. If you need some nifty anecdotes about dead writers, I’m your girl. I like Tyrion, Shireen, coffee, cheesecake, and the Isle of Skye. I received my MFA from the University of Minnesota and my BUS from the University of New Mexico. My poems and stories have appeared in Bellingham Review, Clackamas Literary Review, Cimarron Review, and many other journals. My first novel for young adults, Girl in Pieces, will be published by Random House/Delacorte on August 30, 2016. ”