E.M. Kokie's Blog

September 21, 2016

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On Tuesday night I read that AfterEllen.com is shutting down as of Friday, September 23rd. I was shaken and saddened and angry, and it got me thinking that if we as queer women don’t support “our” media, how can we expect it to last? The powers that be often define what is of value as what is profitable. If we want our media to continue and thrive, we have to support it, monetarily when possible.

For years I have noted with frustration the surprisingly few number of young adult novels with...

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Published on September 21, 2016 19:34 • 61 views

September 13, 2016

Radical cover for reveal (1)I’m so very excited that Radical is out today!

This book has been such a very long time coming. The research and writing process took longer than expected, the revisions took longer than expected. And at every step I was acutely conscious of wanting to get all the interlocking aspects of this book “right.”

And while I knew this book, with it’s sharp edges and complicated bits might not be an easy sell, I’ve been thrilled by the early response and reviews.

To help celebrate the release, anyone...

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Published on September 13, 2016 09:59 • 22 views

July 13, 2016

I’ve been fairly quiet online lately. With recent events, I’ve been doing more listening thanspeaking, and reading, and trying to make sense of many, many things.

But I’ve also been somewhat withdrawn because I should be starting to ramp up to the September 13, 2016 launch of Radical, and my heart hasn’t much been in the self-promotional place. I’m not sure I’d be more inclined to be in book-promo mode if the book were other than Radical, but it has definitely not felt like a good time to be...

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Published on July 13, 2016 09:15 • 30 views

March 7, 2016

I am so excited to finally reveal the cover for Radical!

It went live today over at YA Books Central. Thanks to everyone at YABC for helping to celebrate the reveal!

Radical cover for reveal (1)

Isn’t it fantastic? Special cheers for the amazing work of cover designer Pam Consolazio (who also designed the cover for Personal Effects — I love how these books look next to each other on my shelf).

As part of the reveal celebrations, there are two coveted ARCs of Radical up for grabs. But you can only enter to win an...

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Published on March 07, 2016 10:22 • 39 views

November 2, 2015

Happy fall, friends!

First, the news with immediate gratification potential — for the month of November, the e-book of Personal Effects is on sale for $1.99. So, if you’ve been meaning to read Personal Effects, but haven’t yet picked up a copy, now is the time to buy.

Second, I can finally share information about my next novel! I don’t have a cover image to share yet, but the book is called Radical, and it will be published by Candlewick Press next fall, 2016!

A lot of people have asked for...

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Published on November 02, 2015 04:00 • 42 views

July 21, 2015

I’ve been extremely derelict in posting links here when I post over at The Pirate Tree. Here’s a round-up of some recent posts: In May, I posted a review of the amazing forth-coming middle grade novel George by Alex Gino.

George“…To everyone around her, George is a boy. But George knows that she is a girl, a girl who would like to wear girl’s clothes and play with the girls, and be called Melissa. And it is becoming increasingly painful to keep that knowledge to herself, especially in the very gend...

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Published on July 21, 2015 10:16 • 33 views

April 21, 2015

This week I posted a review of Listen, Slowly by Thanhhà Laiat The Pirate Tree.

With her first novel for young readers (Inside Out and Back Again, HarperCollins 2011), Thanhhà Lai captured in verse one child’s experience adjusting to life in Alabamaafter leaving Vietnam. In Listen, Slowly, Lai explores the experience of Mai (Mia at school), whose parents both emigrated to the United States from Vietnam during or just after the Vietnam War, as she travels to Vietnam to help her grandmother wit...

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Published on April 21, 2015 08:35 • 45 views

February 19, 2015

keklaheadshotI’m up today atThe Pirate Tree (a collectiveof writers for children and teensinterested in social justice issues)with an interview with Kekla Magoon about her recent novels How It Went Down and X: A Novel (co-written with Ilyasah Shabazz).


If you haven’t readHow It Went Down and X: A Novel, get them on your TBR lists now! Timely and relevant, for sure, but also engaging, thought-provoking reads.


And, of course, go check out the interview, where Kekla shares insights into her creative process on...

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Published on February 19, 2015 10:03 • 50 views

February 10, 2015

Happy 2015, friends!


What better way to usher in a new year than with a revamped and updated website. (Not as pretty as my old site, but it’s a transition year and the new design will allow me to update more quickly and easily than the old one.) There are still a few bugs, but I’m working them out.


My website (and this blog) were pretty quiet in 2014. That’s because I spent most of 2014 in the writing and revision cave, working on my second novel (working title, Radical), and writing and revisi...

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Published on February 10, 2015 04:18 • 37 views

May 9, 2013

I get asked a lot about how difficult it was to write Personal Effects from the first person POV of a seventeen-year-old male. I answer the question by talking about avoiding generalizations, by knowing your individual character, by knowing that we are all more alike than different, and that this seventeen-year-old male I know very well, etc. But the truth is, there was one aspect of writing Matt that I’ve been surprised, and saddened, to find was easier than my current project.


You see, Matt...

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Published on May 09, 2013 17:11 • 148 views