If It Makes You Happy
Claire Kann 

Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: June 4th 2019
Genres: Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance, Young Adult

High school finally behind her, Winnie is all set to attend college in the fall. But first she’s spending her summer days working at her granny’s diner and begins spending her midnights with Dallas—the boy she loves to hate and hates that she likes. Winnie lives in Misty Haven, a small town where secrets are impossible to keep—like when Winnie allegedly snaps on Dr. Skinner, which results in everyone feeling compelled to give her weight loss advice for her own good. Because they care that’s she’s “too fat.”
Winnie dreams of someday inheriting the diner—but it’ll go away if they can’t make money, and fast. Winnie has a solution—win a televised cooking competition and make bank. But Granny doesn’t want her to enter—so Winnie has to find a way around her formidable grandmother. Can she come out on top?

~ Short Q&A With Claire ~

Jody: What inspired you to write young adult books? 

Claire: I started writing while I was technically still a young adult. For no reason other than a convenience, my first my main character was a few years younger than me. I wanted to read my stories for my age group so that’s what I wrote. Of course, a book being considered YA isn’t solely based on how old the character is. It also has to do with what happens during the narrative arc.

Now, many years later, it all depends on the story idea, and the core emotions and themes I decide I want to explore. Once that’s established, I wait for the characters to appear and fill their roles. I’m one of those writers where my characters speak to me. They tell me a little about themselves, including how old they are, and I discover the rest while writing the story. When I try to tell them what to do, it almost always causes the story to come to halt and sometimes fall apart.
Jody: Is your character Winnie in any way related to you at all?

Claire: Winnie and I share a few baseline identifiers. We’re both Black, fat, and queer—and that’s pretty much where our similarities end. She’s far more forgiving and dedicated than I am, as well as an extrovert-in-hiding. One of the things I like doing is creating situations that were based on something I had experienced and placing my characters in the thick of it. There’s a seen in IIMYH where a customer is very rude to Winnie. I never would have reacted like she did in a million years. Bio:

Claire Kann is the author of LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE and an award-winning online storyteller. In her other life, she works for a nonprofit that you may have heard of where she daydreams like she’s paid to do it. Find out more by visiting her website: (and while you’re there, tell her about your cats. She loves cats. A lot.)

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