Saturday, February 25, 2017

1 Lilliam Rivera, author of THE EDUCATION OF MARGOT SANCHEZ, on her writing muscle

We're delighted to have Lilliam Rivera here to tell us more about her debut novel THE EDUCATION OF MARGOT SANCHEZ.

Lilliam, what was your inspiration for writing THE EDUCATION OF MARGOT SANCHEZ?

My inspiration for writing the novel came from my own experience working with my father. It was my first summer job and I ended up working at the hospital he works at. It was the first time I got to see him in an environment, outside of the home. Before that my father was larger than life. My father worked as a nurse aid and there was something really humbling in watching my father serve others.

What's your writing ritual like? Do you listen to music? Work at home or at a coffee shop or the library, etc?

My writing ritual is pretty simple. Because I freelance for a living I mostly work from home. I drop my kids off at school, exercise, and then get to writing. I can usually get in two full hours before I lose interest. When I have a full-time gig or I’m on deadline for something, I will write for two hours before going to sleep.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?

My advice to writers would be to write everyday. It doesn’t have to be as daunting as working towards a novel. You can write anything. Journal. Poetry. Flash fiction pieces. I really do believe that writing is like a muscle and you have to work on it everyday.


The Education of Margot Sanchez
by Lilliam Rivera
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Released 2/21/2017

Pretty in Pink comes to the South Bronx in this bold and romantic coming-of-age novel about dysfunctional families, good and bad choices, and finding the courage to question everything you ever thought you wanted—from debut author Lilliam Rivera.


Mami, for destroying my social life
Papi, for allowing Junior to become a Neanderthal
Junior, for becoming a Neanderthal
This supermarket
Everyone else

After “borrowing” her father's credit card to finance a more stylish wardrobe, Margot
Sanchez suddenly finds herself grounded. And by grounded, she means working as an indentured servant in her family’s struggling grocery store to pay off her debts.

With each order of deli meat she slices, Margot can feel her carefully cultivated prep school reputation slipping through her fingers, and she’s willing to do anything to get out of this punishment. Lie, cheat, and maybe even steal…

Margot’s invitation to the ultimate beach party is within reach and she has no intention of letting her family’s drama or Moises—the admittedly good looking but outspoken boy from the neighborhood—keep her from her goal.

Purchase The Education of Margot Sanchez at Amazon
Purchase The Education of Margot Sanchez at IndieBound
View The Education of Margot Sanchez on Goodreads


Hi-res image. Photo by Julian Sambrano Jr. Originally from the Bronx, NYC, Lilliam Rivera is a 2016 Pushcart Prize winner and a 2015 Clarion graduate. She has been awarded fellowships and grants from PEN Center USA, Elizabeth George Foundation, and A Room of Her Own Foundation. Her work has appeared in Tin House, Los Angeles Times, Bellevue Literary Review, Los Angeles Review of Books, Latina, among others. She hosts the Los Angeles-based radio show Literary Soundtrack on Radio Sombra and lives in Los Angeles with her family. Visit her at

Have you had a chance to read THE EDUCATION OF MARGOT SANCHEZ yet? Have you had an interesting summer job? What do you do when you lose interest or hit a writing block? How do you stretch your writing muscles? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!

Happy reading,

Emily, Jocelyn, Anisaa, Sam, Martina, Erin, Susan, Shelly, Kelly, Laura, and Lori Ann

1 comment:

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