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Sunday, September 22, 2013

GCC Presents VOILA - A Short Story by Debbie Rigaud!

Today with the Girlfriends Cyber Circuit, I'm featuring another short story, this one recently released by Debbie Rigaud. Here's a little more about the story and the collection where you can find it...

OPEN MIC: RIFFS ON LIFE BETWEEN CULTURES IN TEN VOICES (Candlewick Press)  Edited by Mitali Perkins
  • Featuring the short story “Voila” by Debbie Rigaud
Listen in as ten YA authors use their own brand of humor to share their stories about growing up between cultures. Edited by acclaimed author and speaker Mitali Perkins, this collection of fiction and nonfiction embraces a mix of styles as diverse as their authors, from laugh-out-loud funny to wry, ironic, or poignant, in prose, poetry and comic form.
About “Voila”
Thanks to overprotective parenting, Simone’s elderly great aunt Ma Tante has more of a social life than she does. But one afternoon, Ma Tante’s social scene awkwardly intersects with Simone’s in the unlikeliest of places.
Rave Reviews for OPEN MIC:
“[Open Mic] will leave readers thinking about the ways that humor can be a survival tool in a world that tends to put people in boxes.” –Publishers Weekly
“Naomi Shihab Nye offers an eloquent poem about her Arab American dad, whose friendliness made him ‘Facebook before it existed.’ David Yoo, Debbie Rigaud, Varian Johnson and Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich also contribute stories to this noteworthy anthology, which robustly proves Perkins’ assertion that ‘funny is powerful.’”
 –Horn Book Magazine
“Teachers will find some powerful material here about how the young can become discomfited and find solace in their multifaceted cultural communities.
 –School Library Journal

Debbie stopped by for a short interview about her writing:

1. Tell me about your book in seven words or less.
Humorous short stories about life between cultures.

2 Other than your main character, who's a favorite character of yours in your story?
Simone's elderly relative Ma Tante. She's loving and sweet, yet quick-witted and sharp-tongued. I love to explore relationship dynamics between the young and elderly. As a teen, elders were an important part of  my life and I'm sure other teens can think of an elder who has touched their lives in some way as well.

3. What's one piece of writing advice you would give to aspiring authors?
Develop your own voice. It’s a chief storytelling tool that makes the experience of reading your work unique and enjoyable. I believe that a well-defied voice speaks to readers about as much as your actual writing does.

4. What did you write when you were a teen? Did you journal? Write poetry? Write overly literary or emotional stories? Or avoid writing altogether?
I did all of the above (including the avoiding writing part--at least when it came to school-assigned writing).Writing was an outlet for not only my creativity, but my general self-expression. I don't think I could've made it through the ups and downs of high school and college without it.

5. What's the last book you read that you really loved?
I'm late to the party on this one, but I recently picked up a few Lois Lowry books and enjoyed them. It was interesting to read what seems to be one of the literary predecessors of today's dystopian YA.

For more about OPEN MIC, like our page
Debbie Rigaud (
Debbie Rigaud began her writing career covering news and entertainment for popular magazines. Her YA fiction debut, HALLWAY DIARIES/Kimani Tru was followed by the fish-out-of-water romantic comedy PERFECT SHOT/Simon Pulse. Since then, Debbie’s non-fiction essays have been published in anthologies IT’S ALL LOVE/Broadway Books and DEAR BULLY/HarperTeen. Her short story “Voila!” is featured in OPEN MIC/Candlewick Press, and TURFQUAKE, her first YA e-book will be released late 2013.

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