Write On! interview with “Journals app” creator Louise Palanker

Louise Palanker is the author of the semi-biographical young adult novel Journals: Middle School Love and War. In hopes of turning her novel into a springboard for open dialogue about teen issues, Palanker launched her book as an interactive book app on iTunes. To continue the conversation, Palanker recently launched the ‘Journals: Out Loud’ Podcast, which airs live on  Tuesdays 8 – 9pm PDT.

Here is an excerpt from the interview:

Why did you decide to launch it as an app? How did you develop the different components?
I have a friend, Ian Broyles who is a talented developer. As soon as I bought my first iPhone and looked through the app store I asked Ian if we could launch my book as an app. It began as just the book and we were amazed by how many more kids were discovering the book through the app store than would ever have found in a book store or a library. We were selected twice as an iTunes Staff Pick.

I’ve always been hugely excited by the creative doors that are swung open through technology and with apps, you can just keep creating. Each app developer is able to build updates which improve and enhance your product. I quickly saw that Journals could become more than a book. I wanted it to be a springboard for dialogue about growing up. So we launched an “Ask The Author” feature within which kids can pose questions about the confusion of adolescence. We then added an “Ask Me Diary,” which provides prompting questions such as: Today I hope…. Today I helped… Today I learned… Kids can choose whatever applies to them on that day and it jump starts their journaling. Next we added a podcast where teens and I address the questions coming into the app. We are in the process of rolling the “Advice” feature into an interactive Journals Social Network.”

For the full interview, visit: http://writeononline.com/2011/05/31/louise-palanker-journals/