YA Reads 2014 Debut Authors Bash: Stephanie Diaz (with a GIVEAWAY!)


Hello, friends! Today I am participating in a book tour run by the awesome site, YA Reads, that is all about celebrating new YA authors. I’m lucky enough to be hosting Stephanie Diaz. She’s 21, she just graduated summa cum laude from San Diego State University (!!!), and her debut novel EXTRACTION is out now.

Clementine has spent her whole life preparing for her sixteenth birthday, when she’ll be tested for Extraction in the hopes of being sent from the planet Kiel’s toxic Surface to the much safer Core, where people live without fear or starvation. When she proves promising enough to be “Extracted,” she must leave without Logan, the boy she loves. Torn apart from her only sense of family, Clem promises to come back and save him from brutal Surface life. 

What she finds initially in the Core is a utopia compared to the Surface—it’s free of hard labor, gun-wielding officials, and the moon’s lethal acid. But life is anything but safe, and Clementine learns that the planet’s leaders are planning to exterminate Surface dwellers, which means Logan, too.

Trapped by the steel walls of the underground and the lies that keep her safe, Clementine must find a way to escape and rescue Logan and the rest of the planet. But the planet leaders don’t want her running—they want her subdued.

With intense action scenes and a cast of unforgettable characters, Extraction is a page-turning, gripping read, sure to entertain lovers of Hunger Games and Ender’s Game, and leave them breathless for more.

As part of this tour, I got to interview Stephanie, ask her about her Top 10 YA Scifi Novels, and she is awesome enough to have THREE SIGNED BOOKMARKS to give away to three lucky winners. Be sure to enter before September 30th!

Adventures in Storyland: Since this blog tour is all about debut authors, I first want to ask – how does it feel to have your first book coming out? Are there any words to describe it?

ac0516_0229362101cf5713c32a5c8e838a8e14.jpg_srz_p_376_488_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srzStephanie: It feels completely surreal. Awesome and freaking terrifying at the same time. My stomach does a little skip whenever I walk into a bookstore and see Extraction on the shelf.

We mostly expect our published authors to be in their thirties or forties or older. You’re 21. What has it been like delving into a world where your professional peers are mostly older than you?

At times it can feel intimidating dealing with older authors and publishing professionals, but everyone I’ve met and worked with has been nothing but supportive and encouraging. I haven’t ever felt like my age was a stigma in any way. Maybe I’m lucky. But I think most people realize it’s not really about how old you are; it’s about how hard you’ve worked at your craft. Whether you start at age ten or age forty, writing takes practice.

Do you have any advice for other young, aspiring writers?

Write the book you want to read. Ignore anyone who says you haven’t experienced enough of your life to write a story worth telling. Shake it off and write, write, write. And always follow your instincts.

What authors have most inspired you?
J.K. Rowling, of course. Also John Green and Veronica Roth.

9781250041173Top Ten YA Scifi Novels?


  • The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
  • The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
  • These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
  • Across the Universe by Beth Revis
  • The Fifth Wave by Rick Yancey
  • Starglass by Phoebe North
  • What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang
  • Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan
  • Legend by Marie Lu
  • Reboot by Amy Tintera



I will see you all on Tuesday with a new book review!