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Today we’re revealing the cover of Girl Mans Up by M-E Girard, which follows a gender-nonconforming teen’s coming of age.
About Girl Mans Up: All Pen wants is to be the kind of girl she’s always been. So why does everyone have a problem with it? They think the way she looks and acts means she’s trying to be a boy—that she should quit trying to be something she’s not. If she dresses like a girl, and does what her folks want, it will show respect. If she takes orders and does what her friend Colby wants, it will show her loyalty. But respect and loyalty, Pen discovers, are empty words. Old-world parents, disintegrating friendships, and strong feelings for other girls drive Pen to see the truth—that in order to be who she truly wants to be, she’ll have to man up.
And now, the cover!
So great, right?! To celebrate Girl Man’s Up’s cover reveal, we asked author M-E Girard a few questions about her book and writing process.
Frenzy: Congratulations on your debut novel! What’s your favourite part about the cover of Girl Mans Up?
Girard: This is the kind of book cover that would make me stop if I walked by it in a store. The cover is so badass looking, and I am in love with this artist’s work. It totally matches the tone of the story. The thing I love the most about it, though, is the fact that the girl on the cover actually looks queer. It’s so difficult for readers—queer or not—who are looking to find queer main characters to find those stories because visually, there’s often nothing to indicate that queer people live within the pages. Visibility is so important, and looking at my book cover, I’m like, “Can’t get much more visible than that!”
Frenzy: Do you have any advice for writers who are just starting out?
Girard: Yes! It’s important for writers who are starting out to ask themselves what they want to do with their writing, how far they want to take it, where they ultimately want to see their words. Nothing is impossible, even for a new writer, but nothing happens without hard work and a clear vision, in my opinion. I started seriously writing fiction in 2010, which isn’t that long ago. I wanted to get better and learn my craft as fast as possible. That means I took workshops, I read tons of “how to” books, I listened to the experts, wrote lots and lots, and most importantly—I acknowledged that I would not be “good” without practice and a ridiculous amount of revising. It’s a lot of work, but if you love it, it’s good times.
Frenzy: Do you have a writing ritual?
Girard: I blast my tunes through my earphones; it drowns everything out and gets me all pumped. And I always reread what I wrote the last time to get back into the story and recall the feelings and energy I was working with. Is procrastinating a ritual? Because I do that a lot, too…
Girl Mans Upis out on September 6, 2016, but you can pre-order it here!
Are you a Canadian blogger interested in reviewing Girl Mans Up? Email us at email@example.com with a link to your blog to enter to receive an advanced reading copy.