New York Times bestselling author Livia Blackburne is a Chinese American author who wrote her first novel while researching the neuroscience of reading at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Since then, she’s switched to full time writing, which also involves getting into people’s heads but without the help of a three tesla MRI scanner.
She is the author of the MIDNIGHT THIEF (An Indies Introduce New Voices selection) and ROSEMARKED (A YALSA Teens Top Ten nominee), as well as the picture book I DREAM OF POPO , which received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and Kirkus.
10 Things About Me:
- I write fantasy. Most often YA fantasy, but sometimes I branch out.
- I was born in Taiwan, raised in Albuqurque, and spent my twenties in Boston, where I earned an A.B. in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard and PhD in cognitive neuroscience from MIT.
- I started my debut novel Midnight Thief in high school, because writing a novel was the only way I could get out of the mandatory camping requirement. I finished about 60 pages. They were 60 awful, awful pages.
- I finished Midnight Thief 12 years later, because writing a novel was the only way I could keep my sanity while conducting my doctoral research. This time, I got to 370 pages, and they were much less awful than the initial 60.
- I write a blog about psychology and neuroscience for writers. You can check it out here.
- Like every good Asian kid, I played the piano as a child. I don’t do that as much anymore, but I still love to sing and dance.
- I’m horrible at any sports that involve fast moving projectiles, and I dislike most sports that involve highly repetitive movements (running, swimming, biking, etc.). This leaves basically dancing and martial arts.
- When I wanted sweets as a child, my mother would give me one M&M. I thought that was normal, and to this day, have very low tolerance for sweets. One bite of chocolate bar, half a scoop of ice cream is about all I can take.
- If I had to choose one author with the biggest influence on my reading and writing development, it would be Tamora Pierce.
- Some of my favorite books: The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner, Plain Kate by Erin Bow, Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein, The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch, The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.
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