Monday, October 18, 2010

The Girlz of Galstanberry:: Exclusive Author Interview

I'm very excited to introduce you all to a pretty incredible woman by the name of Garen S. Wolff, author of the newly published book, The Girlz of Galstanberry.

The Girlz of Glastanberry is the first in a series of books about 5 young girls from all different backgrounds coming together in one place-"From the boroughs of New York, to the beaches of San Francisco, girls hail from all walks of life, to sport the violet blazer and pink beret of the Galstanberry Girls Academy."

Learning about the author of this refreshing new series was just as exciting as learning about the series itself! Don't just take my word for it though-check out her exclusive interview below :)


Q. What made you want to write a book? How long did it take to write from the first idea to publishing?

The diversity of girls around the world--tall, short, blonde, brunette, spunky, shy! In fact, while walking down the street, I see no two girls that look alike! Every girl has a story to tell due to their varied experiences, geographic location, ethnicity, family structure, etc. Therefore, I wanted to create a series that truly reflected the diversity of girls' voices. It took me SEVERAL months from the first idea to publishing.

Q. Is Galstanberry a real place? If so, why did you choose it. If not, how would you describe Galstanberry to a person if it WAS a real place?

Imagine a twenty acre campus that rises up from the horizon like a French chateau with high-spiraling turrets that seem to touch the clouds. It is flanked by a magnificent rose garden and horse stables. Welcome to Galstanberry Girls Academy! Although it is a fictional boarding school in Connecticut, its campus structure resembles that of Yale and Princeton. Carillion Bell tower, which stands regally in Campus Square, fills the air with symphonies of Beethoven and Mozart.

Q. How does attending a private school from Pre-kindergarden to 12th grade help contribute to the overall idea of The Girlz of Galstanberry?

Both Detroit Country Day (pre-Kindergarten to 12th grade) and Wellesley College shaped, The Girlz of Galstanberry. Country Day exposed me to students from all over the country and world. This influenced the representation of different cultures in The Girlz of Galstanberry. The blazer and tie reflect my years of wearing school uniforms.
Wellesley College also influenced the book. The traditions, such as High Tea, pearls and House Mothers, are reflected in the traditions of Galstanberry Girls Academy.

Q. Lillian, Brandi, Fei, Tabitha or Nisha-Which character would you say you are and why?

Honestly, I see myself in each of the girls. I definitely have the energy and spunkiness of Lillian, and, as my family and friends can attest, the humor of Brandi. On certain occasions (when I'm annoyed), I can be sassy like Tabitha, with clever comebacks like Nisha. When I need to speak at a book singing in front of tons of people, I muster all the confidence and strength of Fei :-)

Q. What do you hope girls and woman reading your book take away from it?

Great question!! The most important message of The Girlz of Galstanberry, is that girls should embrace and celebrate their unique voices. What do I mean by "voice"? Girls' voices (aka personalities, opinions) are shaped by their cultural background, socio-economic status, friends, family and even geographic location! Therefore, girls shouldn't feel confined to anyone's standard of beauty or "popular status". We are all different and should be celebrated for our uniqueness!

Q. What is your favorite part of the book?

My favorite part is the integration of cultural nuances, like accents, dialects and native languages. For example, Tabitha's chapter is full of Texan phrases and dialect. Mother is pronounced, "mo-thah", and twenty-five is pronounced, "twenny-fav". In Lillian's chapter, Spanish phrases are used and translated in footnotes. The book has extra flair because of each girl's cultural and geographic differences.

Q. What can we look forward to from you in the future?

A sequel!!! The last chapter, "Welcome Home!" is a complete teaser! In the next book, readers will find out the girls' roommates, classes, etc. And of course, there will be some dra-ma! I'm TOTALLY excited for it!

Q. How can girls become "Galstanberry Ambassadors?"

Galstanberry Ambassadors are VERY SPECIAL! Their job is to spread the Galstanberry news in their school, city or state! When we travel around the country for author events, they (and ofcourse their parents) are our main contact person! Galstanberry Ambassadors that successfully get an author event in their school or town, will be featured on the Galstanberry website, and be presented with a limited edition, autographed Galstanberry poster, at the event. Interested, just email:

Q. Will you be offering any holiday specials on the website?

Yes! For a limited time, people can buy 2 books at a time for just 18.50! Just click the Holiday Discount option!


I want to personally thank Garen for taking the time out of her busy schedule to interact with me and my readers-I had so much fun doing this interview and learning more about her and her book :)

I very much look forward to seeing what else she has in store for us in the future! If you're interested in learning more about Garen, The Girlz of Galstanberry, events or where to purchase the book, check out The Girlz of Galstanberry Website!

Speaking of the future, I'm sure she'll be back on The Element sometime soon *wink wink*

Love and Energies.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Sounds really cool! Always wanted to try my hand at writing, but I'm better at reading.

I love the message she's trying to pass on, specially in light to the recent bullying-suicide episodes....embrace your diversity.