S121. Geography of Nowhere: Suburban Landscape as Stage & Character in Young Adult/Children's Literature

Room 211 C&D, Level 2
Saturday, April 11, 2015
9:00 am to 10:15 am


Contemporary young adult/children’s fiction is largely set in ordinary, often suburban landscapes. Characters experience love, loss, and growth amid the mundane world of sprawling shopping malls, high school football fields, and chain restaurants. Five published authors discuss the extraordinary nature of the everyday in crafting young adult/children’s literature.



Geoff Herbach teaches in the MFA program at Minnesota State University, Mankato and is the author of four young adult titles (Stupid Fast, Nothing Special, I'm With Stupid, and Fat Boy vs. The Cheerleaders) and the literary novel Miracle Letters of T. Rimberg.

Janet Fox is the author of books for young readers, including three young adult historical novels: FaithfulSirens, and Forgiven, a WILLA Literary Award finalist. She has taught high school literature, and her books have been recognized on lists of the ALA and the Junior Library Guild.

Kari Anne Holt is the author of two middle grade novels in verse: Brains for Lunch (a zombie novel in haiku), and Rhyme Schemer. She is also the author of Mike Stellar: Nerves of Steel, a Maud Hart Lovelace nominee and a Nutmeg Book Award finalist. She is a full-time writer in Austin, Texas.

Nikki Loftin writes novels for young readers, including The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy, Nightingale’s Nest, and Wish Girl. Her books have received awards and starred reviews. A former teacher, Nikki holds an MA in English/fiction writing from the University of Texas at Austin.

Kirstin Cronn-Mills is the author of the YA fiction novels, The Sky Always Hears Me: And the Hills Don’t Mind, Beautiful Music for Ugly Children, and Original Fake. She also writes poetry, nonfiction for middle and high school libraries, and academic articles and chapters.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center