YA Outside the Lines has been going strong since 2010. The original idea was simple: Every month, our regular contributors write pieces on a single theme or idea. We've been proud to host so many inspiring YA authors. Bestsellers and midlisters, who wrote stories that ran the gamut: adventure, romance, politics. Authors featured at YAOTL have all tackled the hard-hitting subjects, for an audience dealing with those issues for the very first time. 

Writers currently at YA Outside the Lines:

Charlotte Bennardo 
Until Hollywood calls, Charlotte lives in NJ with her husband, three children, two needy cats and sometimes a deranged squirrel. The Evolution Revolution series: Book 1, Simple Machines, Book 2, Simple Plans, and Book 3, Simple Lessons are her first solo novels. She is co-author of Blonde Ops (St. Martin’s/Dunne) and the Sirenz series: SirenzSirenz Back In Fashion, (Flux), and one of 13 authors in the anthology, Beware the Little White Rabbit (Leap). To put books in the hands of kids, she contributed to the fundraising ebook anthology of horror, Scare Me To Sleep. She’s written for magazines and newspapers, and has given presentations and workshops at NJ SCBWI conferences, schools, libraries, and other venues. Currently she’s working on sci fi, historical, fantasy, and time travel novels for middle grade, young and new adult readers. Connect with her on Twitter (charbennardo), Author Charlotte Bennardo on FB, on Pinterest and Instagram as Charlotte Bennardo, and through her blog, http://charlotteebennardo.blogspot.com/

Sara Biren is the author of three young adult novels from Amulet Books. She also writes adult rom-coms. She earned an MFA in Creative Writing from Mankato State University in Mankato, Minnesota. Until recently a lifelong Minnesotan, Sara now lives in eastern Wisconsin with her husband, two children, and two schnoodles, and works as a part-time editor in addition to writing. She loves cheese, seeing live bands, watching football and hockey, hiking, and traveling. Visit Sara on Instagram or Facebook.

Patty Blount is a technical writer by day, author of edgy teen issues novels by night. Her debut novel, SEND, was a Junior Library Guild Fall Pick for 2012, and her third novel, SOME BOYS was a 2015 Firecracker Award winner, Rita finalist, and book award nominee for Missouri and South Carolina Associations of School Librarians. Patty lives on Long Island with her family and really loves chocolate. Really, really loves chocolate. Look for SOMEONE I USED TO KNOW, a novel about surviving sexual assault (Sourcebooks Fire). You can find Patty on Twitter as @pattyblount or at her website, pattyblount.com.

John Clark isn't quite a real Mainer, having been born in New Jersey, but has lived in the Pine Tree State since 1949. He chose to avoid growing up, but when he realized his dream of starring as a major league baseball player was out of reach, he skipped over bank robbery and got a degree from Arizona State University in English. After 27 years working as a mental health professional, he discovered his real job, being a public librarian. His writing career began as a contributor to Library Services in Mental Health Settings published by Haworth Press. Serving as internet columnist for Behavioral and Social Services Librarian for ten years followed that, as well as being a regular contributor to Wolf Moon Journal a Maine literary magazine.

His first book, The Wizard of Simonton Pond was published as an ebook in 2011. That was followed by numerous short stories published in Level Best Books New England crime anthologies.  He is currently working on Hardscrabble Kids a short story collection about Maine teens who are finding ways to overcome impossible situations, and Don't Say It a historical YA book about a high school junior in 1969 who's beyond fed up with being treated as less than because of her gender.

When not writing, he reads extensively, mostly in the YA genre and reviews almost every book he reads. Gardening, winning sweepstakes and enjoying three grandkids rounds out his most important activities.


Jody Feldman may have been a natural-born reader, but has never claimed to be a natural-born writer. In school, she would either avoid writing assignments or put them off until the last possible moment. Through a series of happenstances, she found herself enrolled in the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism, discovered she really could write, and holds a Bachelor of Journalism degree in advertising which led her to write a television special, a travel book, speeches, all means of market and promotion and … back to her reading roots .. children’s novels. Her first, The Gollywhopper Games received the 2011 Georgia Children's Book Award and the 2011 Grand Canyon Readers Award, and found its way on 20+ state lists. Her second, The Seventh Level (both books from HarperCollins/Greenwillow) received the 2011 Missouri Writers Guild Show Me Best Book Award. Thanks to popular demand, there are now two more books in the Gollywhopper series. Jody Feldman lives in St. Louis where she’s always hard at work on the puzzles or mysteries or twists for whichever might be her next book. www.jodyfeldman.com @jodyfeldman


Brian Katcher is the author of the Stonewall Award-winning LGBTQ romance Almost Perfect, as well as Playing With Matches, winner of the 2011 North Carolina Young Adult Book Award; The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak; Everyone Dies in the End; and Deacon Locke Went to Prom. He lives in Missouri with his wife Sandra, and daughter Sophie.

Sydney Salter’s writing career started with keeping a high school diary, but she now finds it even more exciting—and far less traumatic—to make stuff up. Her novels include My Big Nose And Other Natural Disasters, Jungle Crossing, and Swoon At Your Own Risk. Sydney lives in Utah with her husband and assorted dogs and cats. When not writing, she enjoys reading, cooking, working as a small claims court mediator, and traveling absolutely anywhere. www.sydneysalter.com or @sydney_salter

Jennifer Salvato Doktorski received a 2024 Fellowship from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. She is the author of five young adult novels including FAMOUS LAST WORDS (Holt), a Bank Street College Best Children's Book of the Year and THE SUMMER AFTER YOU & ME (Sourcebooks), a YALSA Teens' Top Ten nominee and the forthcoming FINDING NORMAL (Fitzroy books Jan. 2025). She lives in New Jersey (save the jokes, 9 million people can't be wrong) with her family, spending summers Down the Shore, where everything is always all right. Visit her at www.jendoktorski.com, Instagram @jendoktorski and X @jdoktorski

Author Photo by John Schindler II
Holly Schindler is the author of the critically acclaimed YA A BLUE SO DARK, which received a starred review in Booklist, was named one of Booklist's Top 10 First Novels for Youth, and won both a solver medal in ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year and a gold medal in the IPPYs.  Schindler writes in multiple genres for all age groups (she's also the author of PLAYING HURT, a YA romance, and THE JUNCTION OF SUNSHINE AND LUCKY, a contemporary MG).  Her third YA (and first mystery / thriller), FERAL, released with HarperCollins on August 26, 2014; FERAL received a starred review in Publishers Weekly.  Her fourth YA, SPARK, released in May of 2016 and has been called a "shimmering spell" by Booklist and "tailor-made for readers who believe in the mystery and magic of the theater" by Kirkus. She enjoys interacting with her readers, and encourages them to get in touch at hollyschindler.com.

Mary Strand would rather be living in Paris while writing books and songs, rocking out on guitar in a classic-rock band, playing pro basketball, and eating banana-chocolate crêpes. Constantly.

She practiced law in a large Minneapolis firm for 16 years until she set aside her pointy-toed shoes (or most of them) and escaped to write novels. The first novel she wrote, Cooper’s Folly, won RWA’s Golden Heart award and was her debut novel. She writes YA, women's fiction, and romantic comedy. On the YA front, she wrote a four-book YA series, The Bennet Sisters, starting with Pride, Prejudice, and Push-Up Bras.

Mary lives on a lake in Minneapolis with her husband, two cute but grownup kidlets (when they're there), and a stuffed monkey named Philip. When not writing, she lives for sports, travel, guitar, dancing (badly), and ill-advised adventures that offer a high probability of injury to herself and others.  Visit her at marystrand.com or on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

Laurie Faria Stolarz is the author of eighteen young adult novels, including the Dark House series, the Touch series, Project 17, and Bleed, all published by Disney/Hyperion Books, as well as the bestselling Blue is for Nightmares series. With over a million books sold worldwide, Stolarz’s titles have been translated into thirty languages, developed into podcast series, and optioned for TV. Her newest title, The Last Secret You'll Ever Keep, was released in 2021, a companion book to Jane Anonymous, which was named a 2020 Best Book by Kirkus and included on several state award lists. To learn more about her work, please visit her website: www.lauriestolarz.com (Photo credit: Joseph Puleo)


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  2. Tabatha, I didn't see this comment until just now!

    So, so happy you like us. And thanks for honoring us :)


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