Wednesday, September 14, 2016


Today I am pleased to welcome author Ginger Rue, who has a new middle grade book ready for readers: Tig Ripley, Rock 'N' Roll Rebel (Sleeping Bear Press). 

Ginger and I went to high school together (!), and she is a fellow Alabamian, and she writes smart, fun, wholesome books. Plus, she's an excellent teacher/speaker (currently offering school visits FREE!), so if you need someone, she's your gal! Contact her at ginger (at) gingerruebooks (dot) com.

Here's the review from School Library Journal: Gr 4–6—This novel chronicles Tig Ripley's quest to start an all-girl rock band named Pandora's Box. The 13-year-old protagonist does not play an instrument, and she's been brought up with Southern good manners. In spite of these obstacles, Tig wants to be the band's drummer and leader. The narrative is slow to start as Rue establishes the band members' recruitment and skill set, but once the band forms, the book's pace picks up and readers are drawn into a story that has plenty of girl drama and social angst but very little actual rebellion. The message of finding individuality in middle school is a positive one, and Tig is a flawed but likable narrator. VERDICT For fans who are ready to graduate from Megan McDonald's "Judy Moody" and Charise Mericle Harper's "Just Grace" but aren't quite ready for YA fiction.—Sarah Wilsman, Bainbridge Library, Chagrin Falls, OH 

And now, here's Ginger responding to prompts as they relate to Tig Ripley:

The Difficult: I was a single mom teaching school full time when I got the idea for this book. I was dying to write it, but I had my full-time teaching job, plus a part-time job (which I did on my days off and after school), and suddenly I started getting all these great freelance magazine assignments including cover stories, and I couldn't turn them down because anyone who's ever done magazine work will tell you that plum assignments are hard to come by. All this and being a single mom! I literally never had a day off. I was so exhausted but still wanted to write this book so badly. I was working at a very good school, and I knew I was lucky to have that job, but something had to give. My part-time job was also amazing and I hated to give it up, too, but I couldn't keep doing both, and I certainly couldn't keep doing both and continue writing. I took a leap of faith and was honest with my principal. Then when TIG didn't sell immediately, I thought, a la ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT, "I think I've made a huge mistake." But in the end, it all worked out. It was pretty scary, though, for a while. Good thing my part-time job held out for the next couple of years!

The Delicious: I had these characters in my head for such a long time before I was finally able to sit down and write the book. It was so fulfilling to finally have time to bring them to life. You really don't appreciate writing time until you don't have it.

The Unexpected: My editor at Sleeping Bear has put so much into these books, really above and beyond what I would've expected. One thing I love about the publishing process is making so many new friends along the way. It's fun to have conversations about people I made up. My editor and I both want to be Robbie Chan (the book's band's guitar player) because she's so cool. We are kind of living vicariously through Robbie together!

Ginger, just as gorgeous now
as she was in high school!
Ginger Rue is the author of Brand-New Emily, Jump, and the forthcoming Aleca Zamm series (Aladdin, June 2017). She's a former advice columnist for a teen magazine, and her work has appeared in Seventeen, Teen Vogue, Girls' Life, Family Circle, and other publications. She is currently a contributing editor for Guideposts. Ginger lives in Tuscaloosa with her husband, two daughters, and stepson.


  1. Thank you for this post, Irene. I'm super impressed that she does school visits for FREE. That's some serious giving back to the community!

  2. Thank you for this post, Irene. I'm super impressed that she does school visits for FREE. That's some serious giving back to the community!


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