About Me

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About Me

Michelle Modesto is a writer, hockey fanatic, lover of most art forms, terrible cook and her social skills aren't that great either. Her debut YA novel, REVENGE AND THE WILD comes out from Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins, early 2016. She lives in Northern California in a double-wide mobile asylum with two mastiffs who don't listen to her and two teenagers who also don't listen to her.

Michelle Modesto is represented by John Cusick at The Greenhouse Literary Agency.

Write, Wise, and Explosive

Sometimes when I write I'm like a timid serial killer making adorable little hesitation marks, worried what people will think of me rather than what's best for the story.

I have to keep reminding myself to plunge the knife in with confidence, write what's true despite the fearful looks I may receive from my friends and family.

I have a personal saying, just something I used to tell myself when I first started writing: "Write Wise and Explosive". It's not particularly awe-inspiring or poetic genius, but with a notoriously wandering mind it helps keep my thoughts on the right path. I had the saying tattooed on my fingers in image form (a quill, owl, and bomb) so that when I'm typing I look down at my hands and never forget to do just that.

My writing style

I love world building and the escape from real life, so I'm always toying with the fantasy/scifi, magical realism and sometimes horror genres. I like to take things I don't necessarily care for but like the idea of, and change it to my liking.

Take REVENGE AND THE WILD, for instance. I'm not big into traditional westerns with all the calloused scowling white men and their demure prairie wives who are usually knocked out in the first round in order to drive said scowling white man on his journey for revenge. I live in Northern California, though, home of the gold rush, former frontier, and Donnor party, so the idea of a violent infant America appeals to me as well as revenge.

Same goes for creatures. Paranormal isn't a genre I typically read and contemporary vampires have been there, done that--but I enjoy reading them in Victorian era novels, so why not the wild west where they have wide open spaces to do their worst? Throw in some mechanical limbs, machines, and cannibals and you have a mess, but that's what was so fun about writing the book: taking things that don't necessarily go together and trying to make them work.

Interviews