Author Interview & Giveaway: Mindy Hardwick

We are excited to welcome author, Mindy Hardwick, to the nest today. Be sure to check out the giveaway details at the end of this post.

Andrea @ Reading Lark: Which author inspires you the most? 

Mindy: Cynthia Voigt inspired me to write STAINED GLASS SUMMER. When I was in eighth grade, I devoured HOMECOMING and DICEY’S SONG. Years later, when I wrote STAINED GLASS SUMMER, I realized I subconsciously modeled Jasmine after Cynthia Voigt’s character, Dicey. Both Jasmine and Dicey are abandoned by a parent and have to start a new life living with a relative. I always admired Dicey’s strong sense of survival, and I’d like to think Jasmine has just a little of that too! 

Andrea @ Reading Lark: Why did you choose to set this book in the Pacific Northwest? 

Mindy: It was a natural fit. STAINED GLASS SUMMER is about artistic mentorship in glass art. The Pacific Northwest is known for glass art—everything from the Tacoma Glass Museum to the Pilchuck Glass Art School to Dale Chihuly. The Pacific Northwest also has some great glass art programs for teens. The Hilltop Artists in Tacoma provides youth, ages 11-20, with hot glass instruction, related arts training, and adult mentors. The teens learn glass art in a hot glass shop at Jason Lee Middle School. Glass art is actually an elective kids can take in seventh and eighth grade. There is also a hot glass shop at the Everett Schack Art Center. Last November, I got to participate in a Teen Glass Art Workshop. The workshop was a part of the Reclaiming Futures PAIR Program (Promising Young Artists in Recovery). This is an artist mentor program which works with kids who are in Drug Court at Denney Juvenile Justice Center. There are some great pictures of the workshop posted on the Facebook page for STAINED GLASS SUMMER here: 

Andrea @ Reading Lark: Can you describe your novel in five words? 

Mindy: Artistic, contemporary, heart-felt, inspiring, thought-provoking 

Andrea @ Reading Lark: Who is your favorite fictional character? Why? 

Mindy: I’m not sure I have one favorite character. I really love any YA or MG character who is empowered to solve their problem—whether it be something large such as saving the world from destruction to something simple and powerful in the character’s own lives such as coming to terms with when a parent dies or leaves. 

Andrea @ Reading Lark: Are you a plotter? If so, what is your plotting process? 

Mindy: I am now! I was not a plotter when I wrote STAINED GLASS SUMMER, and it took ten years from the time I began the story to the time it was published. A lot of that time was spent drifting around and not understanding plot or story structure. Since the writing of STAINED GLASS SUMMER, I’ve become much more of a plotter! I like to use the Blake Synder Beat Sheet, and once I have a story plotted, it’s a lot easier to pick the story up if I am not writing for a couple days. I can check the outline and remind myself where the next stop on the story journey is supposed to be! 

Andrea @ Reading Lark: What is your favorite bird? (This one is a Reading Lark tradition). 

Mindy: I love the hummingbird! They bring such joy. 

 This or That: 
- Peanut Butter or Jelly? Jelly 
- Pen or Pencil? Pen 
- Phone Call or Text? Phone call 
- Rain or Snow? Snow 
- Love or Money? Love

About the Novel

Twelve-year-old Jasmine adores her photographer Father and wants to be an artist just like him. But when Dad abandons the family, Jasmine is sent to spend the summer with her Uncle on a Pacific Northwest Island. Soon, Jasmine is learning stained glass from island glass artist, Opal, and thinking she might just be developing a crush on Island boy, Cole. But, it’s not until Jasmine finds herself mentoring another young artist that she can truly let go of her Father and call herself an artist by her own terms.

Stained Glass Summer Links

About the Author

Mindy Hardwick is the author of EPIC Ebook Award Finalist in Children's, STAINED GLASS SUMMER, contemporary young adult romance, WEAVING MAGIC, and contemporary sweet romance novellas, LOVE'S STORMS, LOVE'S BID and LOVE'S CHRISTMAS GIFT. She facilitates poetry workshops with teens at Denney Youth Juvenile Justice Center, and is the co-editor of four of the youth's anthologies. Mindy is included on the Washington State Arts Commission Teaching Artist Roster and worked with the youth of the Tulalip Tribe in the 2011 New Directions Music and Art Prevention Program. She is one of the teaching artists included in the Reclaiming Futures Program at Denney Juvenile Justice Center. Mindy holds an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College and is a member of Seattle SCBWI.

We have ONE eBook copy & ONE audiobook of Stained Glass Summer up for grabs. The winner will be able to choose their preferred eBook reader format. Thank you, Mindy, for providing the book for the giveaway. Both giveaways are open INTERNATIONALLY as long as you can receive ebooks and audiobooks from Audible. In order to win you must:

* Be 13+ years old
* Fill out the Rafflecopter below

The giveaway runs from January 22-28. The winner will be contacted via email on January 29. 


  1. Yo, Mindy - my pick would be eagle, with hummingbird a close second! You're such an innovative author doing an audio book, my kudos go to you there! Great interview! Wishing you success on all your publishing endeavors! Cheers!

    1. Thanks Sharon! I love eagles. I see them from my house when they fly over the lake!

  2. This book looks wonderful. Would love to win a copy!

  3. the story line sounds like a neat one. i'm curious to see what happens with jasmine in the book!

    1. Jasmine has a lot of fun, artistic adventures on her Island! She even gets to have her first kiss!

  4. STAINED GLASS SUMMER looks like such a fantastic read. A subject matter that is incredibly beautiful & creative.

  5. This book loos really good, and I am really looking forward to reading it!


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