We are very excited to chat with the wonderful Nina Kenwood about her latest novel, Unnecessary Drama. Nina’s debut novel, It Sounded Better in My Head, has been shortlisted for multiple awards and has been published in six languages. (It is also one of Priscilla’s favourite YA novels.)
Our conversation covers topics like high-functioning anxiety, the ups and downs of sharehouse living, and family dynamics. Nina shares insights into what publishing a novel is like the second time around, her writing process, and the best way to watch The Vampire Diaries. The first half of this episode is spoiler-free!
About Unnecessary Drama
Eighteen-year-old Brooke is the kind of friend who not only remembers everyone’s birthdays, but also organises the group present, pays for it, and politely chases others for their share. She’s the helper, the doer, the guarder-of-drinks, the minder-of-bags, the maker-of-spreadsheets. She’s the responsible one who always follows the rules—and she plans to keep it that way during her first year of university.
Her new share house is rules-lite. But ‘no unnecessary drama’ means no fights, tension, or romance between housemates. When one of her housemates turns out to be Jesse, her high-school nemesis, Brooke is nervously confident she can handle it. They’ll simply silently endure living together and stay out of each other’s way. But it turns out Jesse isn’t so easy to ignore…
Released October 2022 with Text Publishing.
About the author
Nina Kenwood is an award-winning author living in Melbourne. Her debut YA novel, It Sounded Better in My Head, won the Text Prize and was a finalist for the American Library Association’s William C Morris Award, a CBCA notable book, as well as being shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, the Queensland Literary Awards, the Russell Prize for Humour Writing, the Indie Book Awards and the Australian Book Industry Awards. It Sounded Better in My Head has been published in six languages, and optioned for film.
Nina’s book recommendations
- The Museum of Broken Things by Lauren Draper
- Wild Things: How We Learn to Read and What Happens If We Don’t by Sally Rippin
Relevant mental health resources
- The Centre of Clinical Interventions has helpful self-help tips for understanding and managing anxiety.
- The Alcohol and Drug Foundation provides information and resources to prevent and minimise harm caused by alcohol and other drugs. They also provide information for family and friends of people who use alcohol and other drugs.
- Reach Out has some tips for when you’re moving out of home for the first time.