Picture drawn by Maggie Stiefvater, 2009. Header made by S.F. Robertson, 2010.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fresh New Voice of YA- Interview with Bree Despain

1) How did you get the idea for The Dark Divine?

I got the idea for the story from a conversation between a brother and a sister that popped into my head one night. I was so intrigued by what they were saying to each other that I had to write their story. I’ve also always been fascinated with the prodigal son parable because it doesn’t really have an ending. When I put the two together they just seemed to fit.

2) What was The Call like? Tell us all about it!

I actually thought the call from my agent that the manuscript had sold was a telemarketer because I did not recognize the number. I was also writing an email to my friend at the time, telling her that I didn’t think the manuscript would sell for a while because it was almost Christmas. So when my phone beeped that I had a message, and it was my agent insisting that I call him back, I was pretty surprised. When I did call him back (about 0.376 seconds later) this is how it went:

Agent Ted: Are you screening your calls?
Me: Um… yes?
Agent Ted: Well, I’ve got some bad news…
Me: (panicking, thinking he’s calling to tell me he has to drop me as a client) Uh…. Ok?
Agent Ted: I can no longer call you one of my unpublished authors.
Me: Holy Crap Ted! What are you doing to me! (followed by shouts of jubilee)

3) What are you working on now? Can you tell us anything about it?

I am currently working on the sequel to The Dark Divine. All I can really tell you about it is that it will answer some of the questions readers may have at the end of the first book, and there are a few more surprises to come.

4) Have you always been a fan of YA, or are you still new to it all?

I’ve loved YA for a long time. It’s what I love to read, it’s a great audience to write for, and it’s where my voice belongs.

5) What is your favorite Jelly Belly jelly bean flavor and also, in the spirit of the season, your favorite Christmas candy?

Jelly Belly=Watermelon. Christmas Candy= um…peppermint ice cream? Does that count? It’s got candy in it :D.

6) What book(s) are you reading right now, or are about to start?

Currently reading Hunger Games and will start Catching Fire as soon as I’m done.

7) You took a semester off college to write and direct plays for at-risk, inner city teens from Philadelphia and New York. How did you get involved with that, and what was it like for you to do?

I had been feeling a desire to do something new and different for a long time. I have also always loved theater and writing, so when I saw the ad for the job in my school’s paper I applied almost without thinking. It was definitely a challenging job, but ultimately I loved the kids I was able to work with, and feeling like I helped them even just a little. It was also this experience that helped me realize writing was what I wanted to do with my life.


  1. Great interview! I've been dying to Read The Dark Divine!

  2. Hi :)
    That was a very nice interview.
    Yay! for the sequel to Dark Divine being written. I wonder if Bree's playwriting helped her prose writing?
    Merry Christmas!

  3. I cannot wait to get my hands on the book (and for you to sign it). Congratulations!

  4. Great interview! The story of the call is really funny. LOL