The Debut Young Adult Novel by Debby Dodds is Now Available!
Actress, teacher, and young adult author Debby Dodds has been writing and publishing stories and essays for years, and we are now excited to celebrate the release of her first full-length novel, young adult romance Amish Guys Don’t Call.
About Amish Guys Don’t Call
A story of cross-cultural teenage love, Amish Guys Don’t Call follows Samantha, who is already facing scrutiny and anxiety at the start of her junior year of high school. Sam has finally been accepted into the popular girls’ clique called “The Sherpas,” but when she realizes that her new boyfriend Zach was raised Amish, she must tackle a whole new set of challenges. Her problems are further exacerbated by relatable issues such as her parents’ recent divorce, the shoplifting urges that appear during times of stress, and cyberbullying brought on by her peers.
In the novel, Zach has chosen not to end his Rumspringa, instigating a potential shunning from his family. The details in Amish Guys Don’t Call were carefully researched by Dodds, who not only grew up in “Amish country” and had a brother who did some work on an Amish farm, but also interviewed community Amish members, and read both books about the Amish and the blogs of formerly Amish people.
Inspiration for Amish Guys Don’t Call
Amish Guys Don’t Call was inspired by an incident that happened to the author when she was a teen living in Lancaster, PA. “A boy kept flirting with me but never calling,” Dodds relates. “Finally I found out he was ‘Old Order Mennonite’–not Amish, but close. I started thinking, ‘What if he’d been Amish and on Rumspringa?’”
When asked what sort of books Amish Guys Don’t Call might be compared to, Dodds says she’s always been a fan of the play Othello, the movie The Way We Were, the novels Love in the Time of Cholera and The Great Gatsby, and the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. All have “forbidden loves”–a Moor and a daughter of a Venetian senator, a Jewish liberal and a WASPy Conservative, a rich girl with domineering parents and the boy from the wrong side of the tracks, and a Vampire and a Slayer.
About Debby Dodds
Debby Dodds received her BFA in Drama/Acting from NYU and her MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University. As an actress, she was featured in many independent films and television shows, improv comedy groups, stage shows at both Disneyland and Disney World, and even a special with Jerry Seinfeld. As a writer, Debby has stories published in anthologies such as My Little Red Book, SheWrites, Thin Threads, and Things That You Would Have Said, and contributes to The Living Dead Magazine, The Sun,The Manifest-Station, xoJane, Portland Family Magazine, FlashesintheDark.com, Stumptown Underground, and Hip Mama.
In Portland, Oregon, Debby now performs monthly alternative stand-up/storytelling with the comedy group “Spilt Milk,” and many Portland reading series including “Books and Brews,” “Grief Rites,” and “The Other Side.” She is the proud mother of a twelve-year-old daughter, Dory.
What is your favourite young adult novel?