Author Spotlight: Medeia Sharif
What gave you the inspirations behind 52 likes?
The main character, Valerie, came to mind first. I was inspired by tales of real-life bullying, as well as teenagers being burned by their social media activities, all of which is explored in my novel.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Although Valerie is an amazing character, I really like her best friend Cookie the most. She’s tough, yet gentle. She’s been through many horrible situations, but remains positive.
What message would you like readers to take with them after reading 52 likes?
I would like them to believe that things are not as bad as they seem and that things do get better, even if life throws them the worst. I also hope that young people are more careful about what they share online.
What is your favorite quote in 52 likes?
This quote is in regards to Valerie lamenting the death of the girls who are haunting her.
“Looking back and forth to each of their reflections, I wish I had gotten to know them when they were alive. I’m curious about what they wanted to do after high school, what kind of guys were their types, and what movies and songs were their favorites. These are the details one shares withfriends, but I never got to be friends with these girls. I have some sort of connection with them after their passing. Not a friendship, but something else. I feel sad that all this happened to them, during their senior year when they had prom and graduation to look forward to. They also had college, careers, husbands, children, grandchildren…”
Do you have any current writing projects?
I’m writing another edgy YA novel. I also have two middle grade manuscripts that I’ve been working on.
I was born in New York City and I presently call Miami my home. I received my master’s degree in psychology from Florida Atlantic University. After becoming a voracious reader in high school and a relentless writer dabbling in many genres in college, I found my niche writing for young people. Today I'm a MG and YA writer published through various presses. In addition to being a writer, I'm a public school teacher. My memberships include Mensa, ALAN, and SCBWWI.
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