Kalyn Josephson: I was inspired by “a little girl who fed her neighborhood crows”

5 Questions With...

Kalyn Josephson

[Note From Frolic: Our resident YA expert Aurora Dominguez got the opportunity to interview author Kalyn Josephson and ask her five(ish) questions. Elizabeth’s novel ‘The Storm Crow is out July 9th!]

Aurora: What was your inspiration behind your most recent novel?

Kalyn: The Storm Crow was inspired by a newspaper article I read about a little girl who fed her neighborhood crows. In return, they brought her gifts. Her neighbors called her The Crow Queen, which was the original title of the book. That title stuck with me, spawning a short story about a princess trapped in a tower, and the magical crows that brought her pieces of the world like color and the scent of spring. I couldn’t get the idea of a kingdom reliant on the magic of crows out of my head, and thus The Storm Crow was born.

What character do you most relate to and why?

Definitely Kiva! She’s the main character’s best friend, and she’s there for Thia through everything. She’s straightforward, realistic, and probably a little too sarcastic for her own good, but her friends mean everything to her, which is something I really relate to. That, and the sarcasm.

Why do you feel young adult books are so popular and have such a voice right now? Who is your favorite young adult author?

One reason I think YA books are so popular is because they have a way of sweeping people off their feet with narrative structures that are fast-paced and exciting, while still being thought provoking and layered. There’s a level of emotional connection with these stories that makes it easy to fall in love with them.

I have so many favorite YA authors, I don’t know if I could pick just one! Some auto-buy authors for me are Laini Taylor, Stephanie Garber, Traci Chee, Adrienne Young, and Jessica Cluess.

Please describe the content of your latest book and what can readers expect from the read.

The Storm Crow is a young adult fantasy novel about Thia, a princess who dreamed of becoming a crow rider, until the day an enemy empire destroys the crows. When she finds a surviving crow egg, she enlists the help of her of her sister, loyal best friend, and a kindhearted inventor to ignite a rebellion to bring back what was taken from them.

Readers can expect a story full of elemental magic, animal companions, women whose strength manifests in many different ways, and a powerful healing journey. It’s an exploration of trust, friendship, and what it means to be strong.

What’s next for you in the book world?

The Storm Crow is the first in a duology, so next up for me is the sequel. It’s currently with my editor and we’ve just started brainstorming titles. I’m excited to continue Thia’s story!

What’s your favorite writing method that you follow for inspiration?

Brainstorming on my whiteboard. I plan a lot of the bones of a scene out on my whiteboard before I write it, which makes the process of crafting the scene more like connecting the dots than a free for all. Breaking down the process like that really helps it feel less daunting to me.


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