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Your Novel Year Instructors

Meet Your Instructors

Bill Konigsberg

Bill Konigsberg is the award-winning young adult author of three novels. His most recent novel, The Porcupine of Truth, won the Stonewall Book Award in 2016, made the YALSA’s 2016 Best Fiction for Young Adults, and was on Booklist’s Best of 2015 list and the ALA’s 2015 Rainbow List. Openly Straight won the Sid Fleischman Award for Humor, and was a finalist for the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award and Lambda Literary Award in 2014. It also made YALSA’s Best Fiction for Young Adults List, the TAYSHAS List as a top ten title, the ALA’s Rainbow List, and was a Teens’ Top Ten nominee. His debut novel, Out of the Pocket, won the Lambda Literary Award in 2009. It also made the ALA’s Rainbow List. Bill is an Assistant Professor of Practice at The Piper Center for Creative Writing at Arizona State University, where he coordinates and teaches in the Your Novel Year online certificate program. Prior to turning his attention to writing books for teens, Bill was a sports writer and editor for and The Associated Press. He lives in Chandler, Arizona, with his husband, Chuck, and their Australian Labradoodles, Mabel and Buford. Visit Bill's Facebook and Twitter.

Bill's Website



Barry Lyga

After graduating from Yale with a degree in English, Barry Lyga worked in the comic book industry before quitting to pursue his lifelong love of writing. In 2006, his first young adult novel, The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, was published to rave reviews and Publisher’s Weekly named Lyga a “Flying Start” in December 2006 on the strength of the debut. His second young adult novel, Boy Toy, received starred reviews. VOYA gave it its highest critical rating, and the Chicago Tribune called it “[…] an astounding portrayal of what it is like to be the young male victim.” His third novel, Hero-Type, solidified Lyga’s reputation as a “YA rebel-author” according to the Kirkus Reviews. His latest series has been optioned for television by Warner Bros./Silver Pictures. To date, Lyga has published eleven novels in various genres in his seven-year career and his books have been or are slated to be published in a dozen different languages in North America, Australia, Europe, and Asia. Lyga lives and writes in New York City. His comic book collection is a lot smaller than it used to be, but is still way too big. Visit Barry's Facebook and Twitter.

Barry's Website




Amy Nichols

Amy K. Nichols is the author of the YA science fiction Duplexity series (Now That You’re Here and While You Were Gone), published by Knopf Books for Young Readers. She has served as a mentor with the Your Novel Year program at the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing, and regularly leads discussions and workshops for young writers at libraries and schools around the valley. Insatiably curious, Amy dabbles in art and quantum physics, and has a long list of things she wants to learn before she dies. She lives with her family in Phoenix, AZ. Visit Amy's Facebook and Twitter.

Amy's Website


Corey Ann Haydu

Corey Ann Haydu is the author of four YA novels-- OCD LOVE STORY, LIFE BY COMMITTEE, MAKING PRETTY and THE CAREFUL UNDRESSING OF LOVE. She is also the author of two middle-grade novels, RULES FOR STEALING STARS and THE SOMEDAY SUITCASE, as well as the upcoming middle grade novel EVENTOWN. A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and The New School’s Writing for Children MFA program, Corey has been working in children’s publishing since 2009.

In 2013, Corey was chosen as one of Publisher Weekly’s Flying Starts. Her books have been Junior Library Guild Selections, Indie Next Selections, Banks Street Children's Book Committee Best Books Selections and BCCB Blue Ribbon Selections.

Corey has taught Young Adult and Children's Novel Writing with Mediabistro and Rosemont College, as well as teaching creative writing to children through Writopia. She lives in Brooklyn.


Beth Staples

Beth Staples is the assistant director of the Publishing Laboratory  at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where she teaches Books & Publishing, Publishing Practicum, and Special Topics in Publishing for UNCW’s Creative Writing Department. She is also the Associate Editor for their literary magazine, Ecotone, and the department’s boutique press, Lookout Books. She joined the UNCW faculty from The Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing at Arizona State University where she managed the literary journal Hayden’s Ferry Review and the Center’s other publications from 2007 to 2012.  She has taught classes and given lectures on editing, publishing, and fiction writing at various universities and conferences, and received her MFA in fiction writing from ASU.