Teen Book Fest

Where Teens and Books Meet!

Moderators

Jennifer Brody’s award-winning novel The 13th Continuum sold to Turner Publishing in a 3-book deal and is being packaged into a feature film. The book is a Gold Medal Winner (Young Adult – Sci-Fi/Fantasy) from the Independent Publisher‘s Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards. Return of the Continuums and The United Continuums (July 11, 2017) complete this epic trilogy.

Jennifer is a graduate of Harvard University, a creative writing instructor at the Writing Pad, and a volunteer mentor for the Young Storytellers Foundation. She founded and runs BookPod, a social media group for authors, and she lives and writes in LA. After studying film at Harvard University, she began her career in Hollywood. Highlights include working for Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes and New Line Cinema, most notably on “The Lord of the Rings” films and “The Golden Compass.” In 2008, she produced the film “Make It Happen” for The Weinstein Company. She is a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) and the Romance Writers of America (RWA).

 

Brandy Colbert is author of the critically acclaimed novels, Pointe and Little & Lion, and the forthcoming Finding Yvonne and The Revolution of Birdie Randolph.  Her short fiction and essays have been featured in several anthologies for young people, and her books have made several best-of lists, including Kirkus, Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Vulture, Seventeen magazine, and more.  Brandy lives and writes in Los Angeles.

 

Abdi Nazemian spent his childhood in a series of exciting locations (Tehran, Paris, Toronto, New York), but could usually be found in his bedroom watching old movies and reading. He currently resides in Los Angeles with his two children and his fiancé.

Abdi has written four produced films: Menendez: Blood Brothers (Lifetime, 2017), The Quiet (Sony Pictures Classics, 2006), Celeste in the City (ABC Family, 2004), and Beautiful Girl (ABC Family, 2003). He also wrote, directed and produced the short film Revolution (2012). He is proud to say that his words have been spoken by the likes of Carmela Soprano, The Nanny, and The Girl With The Most Cake. As Head of Development for Water’s End Productions, Abdi has been an executive producer or associate producer on numerous films, including Call me by your name, It Happened in L.A., The Price, The House of Tomorrow, and Little Woods.

Abdi’s first novel, The Walk-in Closet, was released in 2015 by Curtis Brown Unlimited, and was awarded Best Debut at the Lambda Literary Awards. His debut young adult novel, The Authentics, is set for release by Balzer + Bray / HarperCollins on August 8, 2017.   Abdi is not the inspiration for Madonna’s children’s book “The Adventures of Abdi,” though he will forever insist that he is.

 

Cindy Pon is addicted to twitter and bad reality television. And some good ones too, like Project Runway. Silver Phoenix and Fury of the Phoenix, her two young adult fantasies from Greenwillow Books are available now. Her first published short story, “Blue Skies”, is also available in the Diverse Energies anthology. Serpentine, the first book of her second Xia duology was released in 2015. Sacrifice, the sequel, came out in 2016. WANT, her near-future thriller set in Taipei will be released in summer 2017! When Cindy is not writing or painting, she likes to read, daydream, travel, eat and watch films in the theatre. She loves pastries, americanos and Taiwanese food!

 

Isabel Quintero lives and writes in the Inland Empire of Southern California, where she was born and raised. She received her BA in English and MA in English Composition from California State University, San Bernardino. Her first novel, Gabi, A Girl in Pieces, was one of School Library Journal and Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2014, and won the American Library Association’s William C. Morris Award prize for a debut young-adult novel. Her second book, Ugly Cat & Pablo (Scholastic), was published in April 2017, to much acclaim.

 

Amy Spalding grew up in St. Louis, but now lives in the better weather of Los Angeles. She has a B.A. in Advertising & Marketing Communications from Webster University, and an M.A. in Media Studies from The New School. Amy studied longform improv at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre.  By day, she manages the digital media team for an indie film advertising agency. By later day and night, Amy writes, performs, and pets as many cats as she can.