Friday, July 15, 2011

Interview with Kody Keplinger + INTERNATIONAL giveaway of The DUFF

If you've been following me for a while, you'll know that I'm a huge fan of Kody Keplinger's gritty debut novel, The DUFF. Bianca's a seriously strong (and realistic!) heroine, which means I'm extremely excited to have Kody here today to talk about writing dialogue, dealing with high school, and her favorite girl power read!

1. One of the things that I loved about the DUFF was the banter between Bianca
and Wesley- it had me cracking up every few seconds. What’s the hardest
part about writing dialogue that’s both funny and realistic?

You know, that’s a tough question. The truth is, I kind of feel like the dialogue in my
books writes itself. That may sound crazy, but honestly, I’m not that funny in real
life! I just sit down and start typing what fits. Dialogue comes to me more naturally
than any other part of a story, and I think part of it is because my characters tend to
lead the way. That said, there are points when I have to stop myself and ask, “Would
a teenager say this?” It’s a funny question since I’m still a teenager myself, but there
are a few moments when I’ve written things down that only a forty year old man
would say. It’s a crazy process, but it’s actually my favourite/my easiest part.

2. A part of The DUFF that really stuck with me was the scene where Bianca
and her friends see a younger girl being ordered around by seniors. Was that
inspired by events you’ve observed/experienced personally? If so, how did
the person deal with their situation?

It wasn’t inspired by my own experience. That was one of the last scenes I wrote in
the book, and it was one that I thought needed to happen for Bianca to kind of come
to terms with the term “DUFF.” I have seen girls get bullied and bossed around by
their friends – I was one of those girls at one point in high school - but there was
never a particular moment when I noticed it the way she does. I think in high school
we learn to ignore what isn’t “our problem.” Its sad, but its true. Stepping in could
cause us social trauma, so we pretend it doesn’t exist. No one stepped in and pointed
it out to me that my friends were being terrible. I had to figure it out for myself
downt he road, and once I did, I completely separated myself from those people.
Life’s too short to feel bad about yourself because of “friends.”

3. Even if you don’t write with a specific message in mind, what do you hope
that readers will take away from your books?

First and foremost, I hope people put my books down with a smile on their face. I
hope they’ve fallen as in love with the characters as I was. Other than that, every
book is different. I hope readers of THE DUFF take away a feeling of “I’m not
alone,” – no matter what they aren’t alone in. Every reader is impacted differently
by a book, and even if every person takes something different out of the reading
experience, I’m happy.

4. Do you think it’s important for teens to have strong role models in literature?

I do! And I don’t think we need to strictly define role models as those who make
the right choices all the time, because that is unrealistic, obviously. But I think we

need to have strong heroines, wonderfully flawed, ready to make mistakes. Our role
models shouldn’t be naïve, quiet, easily pushed around girls. I’d much rather see a
vibrant, independent, girl who stands up for herself, even if she makes every single
mistake in the book. Somehow, that seems like a better role model to me.

5. What’s your favorite girl-power read—and why?

Vampire Academy. Rose Hathaway is my hero! She kicks so much butt, it is

Kody Keplinger is the author of The DUFF and the upcoming Shut Out. She lives in New York City and can be found online via her website, the YA Highway blog, and Twitter.


  1. Amazing giveaway! Many thanks :)

  2. I am looking foward to read this book.

    Thanks for giveaway!


  3. Thanks for amazing giveaway! :)

  4. Thanks! =)
    I love that your aim is to make readers put your book down with a smile, it's what happens when l put my favourite books down!

  5. thanks for the giveaway and for making it international! :)

  6. Ahh! I've been wanting to read this book soooo badly. Thank you!

  7. Thank you so much for the chance to win!

  8. Thanks for the giveaway. I have been wanting to read this book.

  9. Great giveaway. I've had his book on my wishlist for quite a while.

  10. Thanks for the amazing and international (!!) giveaway!

  11. Thanks for the chance to win. Come by and say hi at my blog

    See ya there!

  12. Thanks for the giveaway :) I've heard such great things about this book!

  13. Thanks for this great chance! I'm a new follower and I have to tell you I love the blog header - very classy!

  14. Fabulous giveaway thank you.


  15. Count me in please! Thanks!

  16. I read the DUFF but I don't have it... :)
    thanks for the giveaway! :D


  17. Great giveaway, I've always wanted to read this book since it came out, it looks quite interesting.
    Thanks :)

  18. thanks for the giveaway and for making it international!!

    GFC-Janhvi Jagtap

    justjanhvi at gmail dot com

  19. I've read some good reviews about this book and really wanna read it! Thanks for the giveaway!

    melissa c

  20. Thanks for the giveaway, and for making it international too, yay!
    I'm a new follower!

    BTW, I'm hosting two giveaways in my blog, just click HERE and feel free to enter :D



  21. Thank you so much for this awesome giveaway. I have been wanting to read this book.


  22. Thanks for this giveaway! :)

  23. Thanks for the giveaway! I've wanted to read THE DUFF for a while!

  24. Thanks for the awesome giveaway!


  25. Thanks so much! I really want to read this book.

  26. This looks like an interesting book!

  27. First of all, girl, your blog is so darn cute! I just love the pastel colors!! Where have you been hiding? :)

    Thank you for the giveaway and for making it International, I'm sending you kisses from Canada for that! :)


  28. Thanks for your generosity, and thank you for making it an international giveaway, although I'm from the US. I absolutely adore your blog.
    Also, I think the whole concept of "The Duff" is so different and unique, I absolutely love the whole idea - so thank you so much for hosting a giveaway for this book, I really appreciate the opportunity! :D

    GFC Follower: ~Enamored Soul~
    Email: Enamoredsoul(at)gmail(dot)com
    Twitter : @inluvwithbookz

  29. This book looks so great!
    Thanks a lot for the chance and have a nice day!

  30. Adorable description!!! Crossing my fingers!

    Thank you for the chance!


  31. :D Thanks for the chance to win Aleka!


  32. Rose kicks butt! I love her character too! Shes strong, cares deeply about her friends. They know what they want and they fight for it.

    High 5 Kody!

  33. I love what Kody said about getting bossed around by friends. I think I was on both ends at some points in my life

  34. Thank you for this amazing giveaway and interview! :)

  35. Thank youuu for your blog! I think your giveaways are a great idea (and giveaways aren't often international, either!) I enjoyed the interview tooo


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