Author Chat with Jaye Robin Brown (The Key to You and Me), Plus Giveaway! ~ (US Only)
Today we're excited to chat with Jaye Robin Brown author of
The Key to You and Me.
Read on for more about Jaye, her book, plus an giveaway!
Meet Jaye Robin Brown!
Jaye Robin Brown is the critically acclaimed author of the young adult novels Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit and No Place to Fall. Her latest book is The Key to You and Me. She lives in North Carolina with her dog, horses, and wife. You can visit her on Instagram @jayerobinbrown or online at www.jayerobinbrown.com.
Meet The Key to You and Me!
A sweet and funny ownvoices LGBTQ+ romance perfect for fans of Becky Albertalli and Julie Murphy, from the critically acclaimed author of Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit!
Piper Kitts is spending the summer living with her grandmother, training at the barn of a former Olympic horseback rider, and trying to get over her ex-girlfriend. Much to Piper’s dismay, her grandmother is making her face her fear of driving by taking lessons from a girl in town.
Kat Pearson has always suspected that she likes girls but fears her North Carolina town is too small to color outside the lines. But when Piper’s grandmother hires Kat to give her driving lessons, everything changes.
Piper’s not sure if she’s ready to let go of her ex. Kat’s navigating uncharted territory with her new crush. With the summer running out, will they be able to unlock a future together?
~ Author Chat ~
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
I really love MaMolly, Piper’s grandmother. She’s self-assured, confident, a successful entrepreneur, and could give a flip about what anyone else thinks. Yes, she’s a little bougie, but it’s part of her charm. That and her gold bangle bracelets. Plus, she’s got tricks up her sleeve when it comes to Piper. She’s the best kind of meddler.
YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?
I never have titles first. My rough drafts have names like Preacher’s Daughter or Grief Book, or in the case of this one, Coffee Dogs (My wife said wouldn’t it be great if we could teach our dogs to bring us coffee? This somehow morphed into an idea about a teen with an errand business. That teen ended up being Kat in THE KEY TO YOU AND ME.) The title for this book came from a brainstorming session. I love titles that play on what happens in the novel. In the case of THE KEY TO YOU AND ME, Kat’s car keys were pretty instrumental in her meeting Piper and their romance developing.
YABC: Do you have a favorite writing snack?
It used to be Jelly Bellys. (Insert sad face here) But now I really avoid sugar, so I’m more likely to eat some chili-coated pistachios or a sliced apple. I also really love coffee and always have at least three cups over the course of the morning.
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
For me it’s that writer friends are essential. I have two different groups of friends I go on retreats (pre-Covid and hopefully post-vaccine) with. Those two long weekends carry me through the whole year. It’s so important to have sounding boards, people you can gripe with, and friends who are willing to give you a quick read and a super honest opinion. Writers really are the only ones who understand what it is we do on a daily basis. Thank goodness for Zoom 2020 and early 2021, the pandemic restrictions would have been even more awful if I hadn’t been able to see my writer friends face to face.
YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?
I absolutely love the bright fun colors. The artist, Colleen Reinhart, did a super job capturing each girl’s personality and style. I love the key fob in Kat’s hand and the use of the highway to create the heart behind them. The cover makes me happy.
YABC: What’s a book you’ve recently read and loved?
I really loved Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey. It’s about subversive horseback librarians in a future west that seems kind of old. And it’s very queer.
YABC: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
I really love to revise. The rough blueprint of the story is there and it’s all a matter of fine-tuning. This is when I go back in and get deeper with voice, emotion, and setting. It’s when I begin to see the overall theme and work toward making the heart of the story shine. I even love polishing on a sentence level during the revision stage.
YABC: What would you say is your superpower?
Directions. We call it the family compass. I can go someplace once and find my way back. My dad is the same way. Honestly, it’s a little freaky. I’m like an intuitive GPS.
YABC: Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
I’m a big fan of Lambda Literary. They have a great summer program for emerging LGBTQIA writers, they bring LGBTQIA authors into schools, and support the queer writing community as a whole. I also really like the Southern Poverty Law Center. They do great working striving for justice and equality in the deep South. It’s where I put my political donation dollars.
YABC: What advice would you give to new writers?
Write. Maybe that’s a bit concise, but really writing is how we learn to write (along with reading) and writing is how we finish things. More writing is how we edit and get to the stages to pursue publication. But also take breaks. Go on vacations, walk your city streets, listen in on conversations, take pottery classes or learn to snorkel. Everything you do, every interaction you have, teaches you about being human and being human is what makes fiction so intriguing.
The Key to You and Me
By: Jaye Robin Brown
Release Date: April 20th, 2021
Two winners will each receive a copy of The Key to You and Me (Jaye Robin Brown) ~ (US Only)
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*