This is the YA author you need to keep an eye on

Michelle author photoA handful of years ago, I met Michelle Modesto right here on this blog: she left some comments, I left some replies, and pretty soon we were swapping ideas about writing. She was just starting out as a writer, and we talked craft quite a bit, both here and via email. Michelle has a ton of talent and some fascinating ideas, and I enjoyed the hell out of our early discussions. Email turned into Facebook and eventually Twitter, and I’m proud to say we’re digital friends now.

Which is why I’m so excited to share this news with you:

A few weeks ago, Michelle sold her debut YA novel, Machine and the Wild, to Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins! 

The novel is a mad mashup of weird fiction and Westerns, set in an alt-history California Gold Rush, with a bit of steampunk (the heroine has a mechanical arm) and a bit of horror (she’s hunting down roving gangs of cannibals) and a bit of fantasy (through magic and fantastical creatures). It’s basically everything everyone would ever want in one novel, and I can’t imagine a cooler book — when I was a teen, I’d have been ALL OVER this thing, and as an adult, I can’t wait to read it!

As with all good things, of course, I will have to wait; Machine and the Wild isn’t due out until 2016. But in the meantime, you can find out a bit more about the author via a new interview over at YA Misfits. You can also see her agent-nabbing query letter and an interview about her querying process in the Kickass Queries series.

And keep an eye out for Michelle’s new website — it’s in development now, but as soon as it’s live, I’ll link to it here.

So welcome an exciting new author, gang, and start following Michelle Modesto through every digital means possible, because come 2016, she’s going to own YA fiction!

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