Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Author Interview with Julia Tannenbaum

We were lucky to interview Julia Tannenbaum after recently sharing about her debut book Changing Ways. How exciting to read a YA book that is actually written by someone in high school! We hope you enjoy learning more about the story behind the story. 

What inspired you to write Changing Ways?

Changing Ways was inspired by my struggles with mental illness. In eighth grade, I was battling an
eating disorder and depression. I was unable to talk about what I was going through and suffered in silence until I discovered writing. Writing became my voice and my escape. Without writing, I honestly don’t know if I would have found the strength to commit to recovery. Five years later, I decided I wanted to use my passion to help other people in the way that it helped me. I wanted to create a realistic, authentic story to spread awareness and understanding of mental illness. So that’s what I did.

How long did it take you to write Changing Ways?
It look me a little over a year to write Changing Ways. I started writing it over the summer of 2017, when my family was visiting a friend in California. I finished six months later, and then spent six more months editing until it was ready for publication.

What is your writing process like? Do you listen to music? Write in a special place? Edit as you go or write and then edit?

I’m a disorganized writer. I rarely write in chronological order; instead, I jump around a lot and cut and paste as I go. I usually wait until I’ve finished the entire manuscript to begin editing, although I do reread scenes and chapters along the way to make sure they flow. I love listening to music, as it helps me get in the right mindset. When I’m writing, I need quiet, and therefore do most of my work in my office.

What are some of your favorite books from childhood? Were there any specific authors who inspired you?

I’ve always been an avid reader. I used to go through at least two books a week. My favorite author is J.K. Rowling. She’s such an inspiration to me with her writing, success, and ability to overcome adversity.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? Why?

California. I was born there, so I’d love to move back when I’m older. I’m not a fan of winter and tend to hole up in my house when it’s cold outside—my moms can attest to that.

If you could befriend a character from your book, who would you befriend? Why?

I’d befriend Grace’s best friend, Lou, in a heartbeat. While a lot of Changing Ways is based on my own experiences, unfortunately, she isn’t. I’d love to have a friend like her; someone who accepts me for who I am, supports me in tough times, and just makes me smile.

Is there anything you’ve learned along your path to publication that you would like to share with new writers?

I’d encourage new writers to not be afraid to reach out for help. I’m self-taught, so initially, I was reluctant to let other people in. I was convinced that I could write and publish Changing Ways on my own, but over time, I realized that to make my book as best as possible, I needed to swallow my pride and get help. Looking back now, if it weren’t for my amazing team of editors, mentors, and marketers, Changing Ways certainly wouldn’t be in the place it is today.

Where can we purchase your book?

My book is available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle versions.


  1. What an amazing accomplishment. Wow! Publishing a book as a teen is a huge deal and I appreciate that Julia was willing to put herself out there. Bravo and best of luck!

  2. well written it.
    Have a wonderful weekend

  3. nothet beautiful post! I enjoyed this so much! Thanks for sharing this post ♡ cant wait till your next one ♡ all the best hope you have a great week


  4. Congrats on your book, Julia. Sounds wonderful.

  5. That was really interesting to read:)

  6. Inspirative book & I followed your blog now. Thx

  7. Congratulations on your release, Julia! Keep writing.