Who We Are

We are a small group of young adult authors debuting in 2013, not to be confused with the Lucky 13s. (That group is large and awesome and all-encompassing when it comes to children's (pb, mg, and ya) books debuting in 2013. If you're looking to join the 2013 children's debut group, the Lucky 13s are your peeps!) Us Thirteeners wanted to host a blog where our readers could prompt and guide discussions, and so we've structured our posts around Truths & Dares. We hope you'll join in the fun!

And now it's time for introductions:

Alexandra Duncan

SALVAGE – Greenwillow Books, Fall 2013
Alexandra is a librarian and writer (plus amateur photographer, crochet enthusiast, cinemaphile, and, or course, book fiend). She lives with her husband and two monstrous, furry cats in the mountains of Western North Carolina. She holds a B.A. in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina at Asheville, and has been a frequent contributor to The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. She loves anything that gets her hands dirty – pie-baking, leatherworking, gardening, drawing, and rolling sushi, to name a few.

blog // twitter


April Tucholke

BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA – Dial/Penguin, August 15, 2013
April Genevieve Tucholke digs classic movies, redheaded villains, big kitchens, and discussing murder at the dinner table. She lives in Oregon at the edge of a forest. Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea is her first novel.



Brandy Colbert

POINTE – Putnam/Penguin, April 10, 2014
Brandy works as a freelance magazine copy editor. She's a picky eater and a vegetarian in real life, but an adventurous foodie at heart. She tap dances and is an avid fan of Degrassi, the Flintstones, Louis C.K., and Hello Kitty. Brandy's also head over heels for YA fiction.

blog // twitter 
photo credit Jessie Weinberg 


Ellen Oh

PROPHECY – Harper Children's, January 2, 2013
Writer, lawyer, college instructor, donut-slayer, chocolate lover.
Addicted to diet coke. Likes to quote extensively from the Princess
Bride, Monty Python and Godfather movies.

website // blog // twitter 
photo credit Robin Shotola  


Elsie Chapman

DUALED – Random House, February 26, 2013
Elsie Chpaman grew up in Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, before graduating from the University of British Columbia with a BA in English literature. She lives in Vancouver with her husband and two children, where she writes to either movies on a loop or music turned up way too loud (and sometimes both at the same time). DUALED is her first novel.

blog // twitter 
photo credit Michael Meskin


Erin Bowman

TAKEN – HarperTeen, April 16, 2013
Erin Bowman used to tell stories visually as a web designer. Now a full-time writer, she relies solely on words. Erin lives in New Hampshire with her husband. When not writing she can often be found hiking, geeking out over good typography, and obsessing over all things Harry Potter. TAKEN is her first novel.

blog // twitter 
photo credit Tamara Namaste Photography


J.R. Johansson

INSOMNIA – Flux, June 10, 2013
J.R. Johansson (Jenn) has two amazing sons and a wonderful husband who keep her busy and happy. In fact, other than her cat, she is pretty much drowning in testosterone. They live in a valley between huge mountains and a beautiful lake where the sun shines more than 300 days per year. She loves writing, playing board games, and sitting in her hot tub. Her dream is that someday she can do all three at the same time.

photo credit Michelle Davidson Argyle 


Kasie West

PIVOT POINT – HarperTeen, February 12, 2013
Kasie West lives with her family in central California, where the heat tries to kill her with its 115-degree stretches. She graduated from Fresno State University with a BA degree that has nothing to do with writing.

blog // twitter 
photo credit Stephanie Ryan Photography 


Megan Shepherd

THE MADMAN'S DAUGHTER – Balzer + Bray, January 29, 2013
Megan Shepherd grew up in her family's independent bookstore in North Carolina. An avid reader and world traveler who spent several years in the Peace Corps, Megan now lives with her husband in Asheville, North Carolina. The Madman's Daughter is her first novel.

photo credit Kristi Hedberg Photography 


Mindy McGinnis

NOT A DROP TO DRINKKatherine Tegen Books, September 24, 2013
Mindy McGinnis is an assistant YA librarian who lives in Ohio and cans her own food. She graduated from Otterbein University magna cum laude with a BA in English Literature and Religion. Mindy has a pond in her back yard but has never shot anyone.

blog // twitter
photo credit Amy Parrish 


Natalie Whipple

TRANSPARENT – HarperTeen, May 21, 2013
Natalie is a YA writer and card-carrying nerd. Her favorite areas of the nerd realm include anime, Korean dramas, good cheese, and playing mmorpgs with her family. Natalie takes pride in writing the weirdest books she can think of, and her novels TRANSPARENT (May 21, 2013) and HOUSE OF IVY AND SORROW (Winter 2014) are forthcoming from HarperTeen.

blog // twitter


Renee Collins

RELIC – Entangled, September 3, 2013
Renee is a YA writer and professional ponderer. She loves historical settings, fantasy, and semi-tragic romance. RELIC is her first novel.

blog // twitter 
photo credit Darcy Case Photography 


Shannon Messenger
LET THE SKY FALL – Simon Pulse, March 5, 2013
Shannon Messenger grew up among the sandstorms and giant bugs of the desert and was not sad at all when her family finally escaped the heat. She's studied art, screenwriting, and television production, but realized her real passion was writing for kids and teens. LET THE SKY FALL is her first young adult novel. She is also the author of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES, book one in a middle grade series. She lives in Southern California with her wonderful husband and far too many cats and believes In-N-Out cheeseburgers are the perfect food.

blog // twitter 
photo credit DeVende Photography