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Guest post: Author Jammie Kern

Yesterday we reviewed Ryann in the Sky, a YA short story inspired on Orion's myth.  It was  delightful to read this short.  Today we have the visit of the author of this story, Jammie Kern or as in other parts is known...Mama JK.  Welcome to Jessy's Bookends, Jammie.


From Publisher:
Author Jammie Kern tackles Orion’s tale in, “Ryann in the Sky,” a YA short about a very tall volleyball player having a very bad year. She’s grieving the loss of her father when a back-stabbing friend tries to dethrone her from the volleyball team heading into the championship. What makes a champion, and, moreover, what makes a friend? This story of overcoming loss and rising above the fray is a beautiful read from an amazing writer.

The Rise of Mama JK
Remember that emotional roller coaster we all rode in high school? That wicked ride is what’s inspired many scenes I've written for young adults. In “Ryann in the Sky,” my main character goes for a ride on an emotional roller coaster of her own where she learns that she can only depend on herself if she wants to achieve her goals. She’s come to understand that important people have left her life forever, and the rest are simply doing their best, (or doing their best to undermine her.)

This is the stuff of myths, where heroes rise from desperate situations. Most of us know what it’s like to become our own hero, to fully embrace responsibility. We watch teens struggle with that realization and we want to step in with the big here’s-what-you-need-to-do lecture. I’ve got gobs of nieces and nephews so I should have answers, right? Wrong.
Yapping my advice at teens has been one of my most embarrassing regrets. Believe me, they’ve shown me precisely how un-cool I am on so many levels. You’d think my words were teen repellant. (Lord, help us all when my young daughters get their tickets for the roller coaster.)
It’s only been in the past few years that I made an important discovery. Teens don’t care what I have to say, (unless I say it with a British accent, but that’s another story.) They only need to know that I’m there for them, consistently. As a camp counselor, I’ve seen kids go through some intense experiences and loss. When many of the key people in their lives have left, I show up (with many others at our camp,) when I’m supposed to. I’m there with hugs and a willingness to listen. I’m amazed at their resiliency, their strengths in the midst of vulnerability. I should take a lesson from them.
Just a few months ago, I had a van full of kids and teens. We were travelling for a few hours when I achieved the ultimate badge of honor from teenagers: a nickname! My daughters call me Mom, my nephews and nieces call me Aunt Jammie, and now I’m called “Mama JK.” That’s about as cool as I’ll ever be, and it’s plenty.

Jammie Kern is the author of the young adult short story, "Ryann in the Sky," in the Mythology High series by Buzz Books USA. The digital short is available where ebooks are sold for .99. Her next short story will release Labor Day weekend. Kern is raising daughters, raising chickens for fresh eggs, raising an organic vegetable garden in NE Oklahoma, and raising some eyebrows at www.jammiekern.com.


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