KBKL Spotlight on Canadians: Natasha Deen

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A big Kick-butt Kidlit welcome to author, Natasha Deen!

Award-winning author Natasha Deen spent the first part of her life in Guyana, then her family moved to Calgary, Alberta. She found this terribly exciting until her first minus-forty-degree winter day, at which point she began to question the sanity of the grown-ups around her. Natasha currently lives in Edmonton, Alberta with her husband and pets, and regularly entices the muses to her office with offers of cupcakes and tea.

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Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming project?

Nira Ghani has always dreamed of becoming a musician. Her Guyanese parents, however, have big plans for her to become a scientist or doctor. Nira’s grandmother and her best friend, Emily, are the only people who seem to truly understand her desire to establish an identity outside of the one imposed on Nira by her parents. When auditions for jazz band are announced, Nira realizes it’s now or never to convince her parents that she deserves a chance to pursue her passion.

What are you reading right now?

If you’re looking for a fun read, then try “The Manic Pix Dream Boy Improvement Project,” by Lenore Appelhans. ^_^

Who is a Canadian author or illustrator that you’d like to see more people discover?

There are so many I couldn’t even begin to name one!

What’s been the most surprising part of your publishing journey so far?

For me, the most surprising part of my journey is that it gets more difficult with every book. When I first started writing, I figured by my third or fifth book, I’d have a handle on voice, character, tone, etc., but the more I write, the more I realize what an incredible & amazing thing it is to write a story. It becomes more difficult each time because I want to do right by both the story and the reader.

When a reader picks up your books, they can always expect to find…

Based on reader feedback, I’d say folks can expect fun characters & character interaction, lots of humour, and some kind of happy ending (it probably won’t be a Hollywood happy ending, but there will be some type of positive-ish resolution).

What’s the most Canadian thing you’ve put in a book?


What would you like to see more of in the world of Canadian children’s literature?

I think Canadian children’s literature rocks and I’d just like to see more of it!

If you could spend a day inside of any book, which one would you choose?

Any book where the character gets to sit down to some kind of yummy feast, that’s the book and the scene I’d pick.

Lastly, we always end with: what’s your best piece of kick-butt advice?

It’s okay.

It’s okay if some days are difficult, it’s okay if sometimes you try and fail, it’s okay if you do your very best and you still have your heart broken. The path of a hero isn’t smooth or easy, it’s full of rough patches and dark moments. So if you’re ever struggling, just remember, you’re the hero of your story and it’ll get better. Give yourself some self-care, a hug, and after you’ve rested, continue on. You deserve your happy ending. ^_^

Yes, yes, yes! Thank you so much for joining us, Natasha!

Kick-butt Kidlit friends, add Natasha’s books on Goodreads!

Connect with Natasha on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or through her website!

Click here to enter to the Spotlight on Canadians Giveaway! You could win one of 25 prize packs featuring books from all of our amazing creators!

Natasha Deen Prize Pack – a copy of IN THE KEY OF NIRA GHANI

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Other available prizes:

Charlene Chua Prize Pack – a copy of THE WIND PLAYS TRICKS

Tanaz Bhathena Prize Pack – a copy of THE BEAUTY OF THE MOMENT

Philippa Dowding Prize Pack – a copy of OCULUM

Mahtab Narsimhan Prize Pack – a copy of EMBRACE THE CHICKEN

Mireille Messier Prize Pack – a signed copy of TELLEMENT SAUVAGE!

Jennifer Mook-Sang Prize Pack – a signed copy of CAPTAIN MONTY TAKES THE PLUNGE

Regan McDonell Prize Pack – a copy of BLACK CHUCK

Carmen Mok Prize Pack – a copy of GRANDMOTHER’S VISIT

Tom Ryan Prize Pack – the very first signed ARC of KEEP THIS TO YOURSELF

Naseem Hrab Prize Pack – a copy of IRA CRUMB FEELS THE FEELINGS

Joanne Robertson Prize Pack – a signed copy of THE WATER WALKER

Sarah Raughley Prize Pack – all three books in the EFFIGIES series

Join us on Monday, April 1st when we chat with author, Erin Bow!

12 thoughts on “KBKL Spotlight on Canadians: Natasha Deen

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