The Story of Shana

Shana Mlawski is not a fan of writing about herself, especially in the third person, so here are some bullet points:

  • She is the author of the YA fantasy Hammer of Witches to be released by Tu Books / Lee & Low in April 2013.
  • You may have seen her semi-viral Female Character Flowchart or read her semi-internet-famous article "Why Strong Female Characters Are Bad for Women" on, the website that subjects the popular culture to a level of scrutiny it probably doesn’t deserve.
  • Shana is a native New Yorker who currently lives in New York, although she previously lived in Connecticut and Puerto Rico. Every time she leaves her home state she gets the heebie-jeebies* because, wow, everywhere else in the world is much calmer.
  • Nerd cred: When she was a kid, her favorite books were A Wrinkle In Time and Lord of the Rings. Significantly less nerd cred: She has read almost every Goosebumps and Baby-sitter's Club book ever written.
  • She briefly considered attending Oxford because of The Golden Compass. Thankfully she matured and attended Yale because it's like Hogwarts.
  • She currently works as an education writer and English tutor (among other things). If you need help with reading comprehension or writing, or if you're about to take the SAT, visit Reading Care and Writing and she'll help you out.
  • She is a cat person but has a cute dog-niece named Sunshine.
  • Despite what you may have read on the Internet, Shana is not a writer of color, though she tries to be an ally to writers of color as much as possible. I encourage all visitors to this website to check out Lee & Low, DiversifYA, and the Diversity in YA  blog.
  • Her work has been featured in these publications: Wired , The  Los Angeles Review of Books,  The Atlantic , The Huffington Post , io9/Jezebel ,  Ms.  Magazine , and The Guardian .

*Surprisingly, not a racial slur!


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