This Is The Author | Jess Shatkin

“My book is about adolescents—how they age, how they grow, and how they make decisions. Why do they do what seem like the most insane things at times? I wrote my book because I’ve always been really interested in the teenage years, and not only teens, but adolescence, that period of time from about 10,11,12 until about 25, 26,27, when we actually start to not only become, but act, like adults. Those years so many things change and we all remember those years in in our own lives so acutely, so intensely, just like it was yesterday. Well, it turns out there are a bunch of reasons why that is the case and we set a path for ourselves during those years that really forecasts our future…so much inevitably changes and predicts who we will become and how we will get there. And that is something that has fascinated me my entire life.”

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This Is The Author | Jaime Lowe

“As a magazine writer, I’m always looking for other people’s stories and trying to talk to people about what their lives are like. I always knew that that came from a place from having some pretty crazy experiences as somebody who’s bipolar and that I had all these stories that seemed outlandish and bananas, and that maybe I had to start with my own story. It all definitely started when lithium, the medication that I was taking for bipolar disorder, stopped working for me. All of a sudden, bipolar disorder and lithium became so much more prominent and important in my life. And it became much more clear to me that it was a bigger part of my identity than I ever imagined.”

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This Is The Author | Gretchen Rubin

“My book The Four Tendencies is about a personality framework that I’ve identified called the Four Tendencies that divides all of humanity into four types: Upholder, Questioner, Obliger, and Rebel. I got my first insight into this framework when I had lunch with a friend and she said something that got me obsessed with this question of personality types. She said, ‘I know I would be happier if I would go running, and when I was in high school I was on the track team and I never missed track practice, so why can’t I go running now?’ And I thought, ‘Well, why? It’s the same person, the same behavior, at that time it was effortless but now she can’t do it. What’s going on?’ My determination to figure out the answer to that question, in the end, led me to write a whole book, called The Four Tendencies.”

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This Is The Author | Jim Stengel

“I was inspired to write this book, UNLEASHING THE INNOVATORS, because I love big companies, I worked in one for 25 years, and in my consulting practice, company after company I meet is struggling with culture change, and revitalization, and growth, and energy, and risk and dealing with fear of failure. And many of them were using startups to try to kind of put new energy into the company. And yet, I didn’t think there was a playbook for that.”

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This Is The Author | Erwin Raphael McManus

“Hi, my name is Erwin Raphael McManus. I live here in Los Angeles, California and I’m the lead pastor of a community of faith called Mosaic. I just wrote a book called THE LAST ARROW. And THE LAST ARROW is really about living a life without regret. I began to ask the question, “what is it about people that often times confuses quitting with failing?” Since so many times in life we lower our expectations, and so in some ways the subtext title for me is that we should never settle.”

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This Is The Author | Mariam Gates

“What inspired me to write MEDITATE WITH ME: A Step-by-Step Mindfulness Journey was I wanted kids to have a way to slow down. I wanted to give kids a beloved book that they could connect to, that they could interact with, practices that were easy for them, a way to feel their breath in their body, a way to slow down when they need it, and a way to really calm themselves…a way to sort of start practicing self-soothing techniques that they’ll really need throughout their entire lives.”

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This Is The Author | Jen Waite

“It is about basically finding an email when my daughter was three weeks old that led me to the discovery that my husband was not who I thought he was. And showing the really perfect fairy tale ‘before’ aspects of our relationship and then the ‘after’ parts, where I’m just uncovering lie after lie and kind of unraveling this double life he had been living. I wrote my book because I actually didn’t feel like I had a choice not to. It kind of wrote itself in four months and it felt like I was writing to survive.”

Learn more about  A Beautiful, Terrible Thing.

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This Is The Author | Michelle Kuo

“My book, Reading with Patrick, is about a student of mine named Patrick, and this remarkable literary and intellectual awakening we experienced together in a county jail in Arkansas. He was a student in my class who was incredibly bright, really quiet, and just had trouble coming to school. I really encouraged him to come to school to write and to read and we had this incredible year together where he improved incredibly. Three years after this, I’ve left Arkansas—it’s a place where a lot of people leave—I agonize about it, I decide to go to law school. My parents are like, “what the heck are you doing in Arkansas?” Three years later, I’m in law school and I find out from a friend that Patrick had gotten into a fight and killed someone. I was totally devastated. I was shocked. I went back to Arkansas to visit him in county jail and I discovered that his reading skills had regressed. They were worse when I first met him in the eighth grade, and it’s because he had dropped out of school the year after I left the Delta. The heart of the book is really about us reading together in jail for seven months while we’re waiting for his trial, and about the incredible agility and the power of reading together and writing together. And it’s also about me grappling with my own failures and trying to think about the legacy of racism and poverty in the Mississippi Delta.”

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This Is The Author | Sarah Sentilles

“It took me 10 years to write DRAW YOUR WEAPONS. I wrote it after seeing two photographs. The first photograph I saw was a picture of a man and he was holding a violin, and I read the newspaper story about him. It turned out he was a conscientious objector during World War II who’d protested the internment of Japanese Americans, and was put in prison. While he was there, he built a violin. And the newspaper story I read about him was about his grandson completing that violin and giving it to him on his birthday. And everything in my body said, ‘you have to write about this person.'”

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This Is The Author | Anne Helen Petersen

“I found myself writing about a lot of these women in my day job, which is a culture writer at BuzzFeed. And it seemed clear to me that there was something that was changing. I used to be a professor, and I focused on media studies but also gender studies. And so I was very familiar with the ways that attitude towards women, an embrace of feminism, and unruliness generally, kind of ebb and flow over decades.”

Learn more about Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud.

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