Saturday, August 11, 2018

Our First Blogoversary: Featuring the Rebellious Writing Team

On August 9, 2017, 9 young women collectively held their breath as their first blog post was released to the world.

Two months of explosive growth and support on social media after a small insignificant blog post on one blog had been the driving force. The excitement was heated as the movement, on it's own, started to fly around the Internet - reaching everyone from the pressured teens, to concerned family members, to the lonely authors. All who were hoping, praying, and working towards higher standards in Young Adult literature. 

A year later, we are still going strong.

To celebrate this important milestone, our team members have compiled their reflections and thoughts in a Round Table - in similar fashion to the one that was featured in that very same post that began this blog.

Note: Please send our other Twitter Co-Coordinator and blog writer Melissa Gravitis lots of support - she's going through a lot of exams at this time and couldn't write for the Round Table.

Without further ado, we give the mic to....

Gray Marie Cox
Founder, Blog Writer, Pinterest Coordinator, Assistant Goodreads Moderator

It’s amazing to think that a whole year has passed since the start of this movement. It still feels like yesterday when I pushed the publish button on my blog post Dear Writers.

That post had a call to action in it at the end. Little did I know at the time how many people would answer that call and what our collected posts, dreams, and thoughts on #RebelliousWriting would turn into.

I’d like to thank you all for everything. Thank you for the support, the guests posts, the book reviews, the follows, thank you for believing in us and this movement. Thank you for helping us raise the standards for young adult.

You guys inspire me to be a better writer, and I hope this blog has inspired y’all.

To many more years,

Keturah Lamb
Blog Writer, Youtube Coordinator 

When I was younger I loved books so much. (Not that I don’t still, I’ve just learned to love other things, too . . . ) My favorite thing in the world to do was to go to thrift stores and yard sales and sort through all the books and spend all my change on stacks of books which I’d devour in a week. I usually looked for specific authors or titles I knew I liked (or might like), first hearing of them through friends or catalogues or backs of other books.

But oftentimes I’d find myself looking at a new book and had no idea if I’d like it or not . . .
Or worse yet I’d buy a book and read the whole thing only to discover I hated it (I had a hard time quitting a book. Just felt wrong).

And so when I was a young teen I dreamed of growing up and writing honest book reviews and collecting them all together in one place so that people could check out the site and know what the book was about before wasting money or time on it. For awhile I wrote a book review for every book I read in a notebook, just for my peace of mind’s sake.

And then one day I stumbled across Gray’s movement. I was overjoyed! Here was something even better than what I’d dreamed of. While I haven’t done much as a YouTube coordinator, I’m still honored to be a part of this group and all it stands for, and hope that I can start creating content that’s acceptable for what we all stand for.

It encourages me so much to see so many young readers standing against inappropriate fiction, and inspiring one another to be BETTER even if better is looked down upon.

Faith Thompson
Blog Writer, Facebook Coordinator, Assistant Goodreads Moderator

I still remember the first few books my innocent eyes came across in the Young Adult section of my library. Nowadays, I know that these are the sort of books no one with tact enjoys and that everyone should avoid… but back in the day when I could only go off the blurb, I grabbed them and have never forgotten. The lines that made my cheeks burn and forced me to slam the book shut. The covers and titles of books that I still walk past in my library that look down at me condescendingly: “You’re a wimp,” they seem to say. “Your taste in books has declined greatly, hasn’t it?”

That was before I joined Rebellious Writing. Before I began to network with dozens of readers and writers who also seek clean fiction, books that don’t make your cheeks burn or make you want to shove them under the bed to hide them even though you know that they’re wrong and you want nothing more than to get rid of them. I still search the YA section of the library for books— but now I understand that it’s okay to look for clean lit. I am not ashamed of my desire for books without content. And you don’t have to be either.

This is a community. This is a place where you can find your people and really, truly be aware that you are not alone in the search for clean YA. You’re not alone. We at Rebellious Writing are with you. We’re a team, and you are part of this team.

Thank you for making this first year something to remember.

Lila Kims
Blog Writer, Google+ Coordinator, Assistant Goodreads Moderator

It's odd how the adrenaline of doing something “big,” something important that actually makes a difference, can fade over time. And yet, even when you're not pulsing with energy over it like you did when it all began, you never give up on it. It’s a passion.

I’m passionate about clean fiction. Yes, there have been moments when I’ve watched on as other readers throughout the world obsessed over SO many books I know aren't clean and thought, “Wow. They have it easy. They don't care as much, so they don't worry as much.” I do have these dim moments sometimes, when a thin strand of envy unfurls, but I joined Rebellious Writing because I do care. And my appreciation for stories that aren't overwhelmingly dark and gritty (but rather light-filled and clean) has definitely grown since we published our first post last year.

The past months have revealed to me piece by piece, post by post, that I’m not alone in the difficulty of DNF-ing a book due to glorified or casually thrown-in elements that make me uncomfortable, how impossible - and revolting an idea - it would be to write a story with such elements. That encourages me. This movement and my Rebellious Writing companions (you guys!) are an encouragement. The stand we’ve taken throughout this year, with our blog and social media, is an encouragement. I dearly hope that Rebellious Writing has encouraged many of you this past year as well.

Let’s continue to edify and exhort one another as the movement keeps growing. Let’s not give up on our love for clean fiction, not even when we’re tired or not feeling the adrenaline rush of our passion.

Clare A.
Blog Writer, Blog Scheduler

I had just about given up hope. Several times I had screamed out loud, “Isn’t there anything good to read anymore!!??” I was in the “depths of despair” (Anne of Green Gables). Then, I saw a post. After following the link I came across Gray’s post. “Yes! I am not alone!” was my first reaction.

I had never dreamed of being part of the movement, I had never dreamed that we would have come so far. A year ago we launched this website, Rebellious Writing. So many things have happened, first of all: we learned that this is not something easy. But just because something is easy doesn’t make it right. There have been times when we have thought it was too hard. But it is you, all of the people who continue to support us, that give us hope.

All I can say is: thank you. Thank you for all your stories and encouragement. Thank you, from all of us.

Yours &c.
Clare A.

Audrey Caylin
Blog Writer, Twitter Co-Coordinator

Reading has always been a passion of mine. In the past years when I searched for good, clean stories and found so few of them, I began to think the problem wasn’t the stories, but me: I just had to lower my standards for the amount of “unclean” content in them and I would be fine. Thankfully, my conscience helped me to avoid doing that, and for a while I thought I was one of the only readers in the world who longed for clean YA fiction.

Then I stumbled across a movement called Rebellious Writing, and I realized I wasn’t so alone, that other people cared about clean young adult books as much as I did.

I think that realization -- that we’re not alone in our search -- is one of the greatest blessings of Rebellious Writing. When we realize we aren’t alone, we’re empowered, emboldened, and encouraged. The community that has grown because of Rebellious Writing is beautiful in that way, and I’m incredibly thankful that I found it.

In the years to come, I can’t wait to see how far this movement goes as we spread the word of the necessity of clean YA, helping readers find good books and encouraging authors to write them. Something beautiful is growing from the seed planted by Gray’s first blog post, and I believe the work Rebellious Writing has done in the past year is just the start of it.


Catherine Hawthorn
Blog Writer, Communications Manager, Blog Post Formatter, Assistant Goodreads Moderator, Book Scout Coordinator

The fire that started in my heart when I read Gray’s Dear Writers post hasn’t died yet. In fact, it’s only grown stronger, even as I’ve changed hats many times.

This movement, even though it’s only existed for a year has already given so much: a wonderful circle of friends, new books to read, and great writing advice. But, the biggest benefit that it has given is it has helped people detach from the toxic literature that is being offered as literary “food” to us book dragons. And it all started by words - 882 to be exact.

Since becoming a part of Rebellious Writing, I’ve made a huge change in my standards in reading books. I’ve learned to catch lustful references that I glanced over as a teenager, and have backed off on reading lots of romance. Reviews of perspective books and blurbs are now more scoured over for objectionable content. I’ve even done the unthinkable and deleted books from my Kindle that I used to to really like because they don’t meet the higher standard that I have. Because I’ve stopped taking in such trash, my mind and my soul are starting to become more purified and aimed at Heaven - a goal that I’ve struggled with for years.

Communicating and collaborating with other writers of all ages has really given me hope that this movement will continue for years to come. It started with words, it has grown by words, it will continue by words. Let us continue the Rebellion by continuing to spread those words around - both on AND off the computer screen.

In Conclusion.....

In some ways, we haven't changed that much. We've stayed true to our mission of clean reading and writing.

In other ways, we have changed much. We've taken on new challenges, we've made plenty of mistakes, and learned lots of lessons along the way.

Our biggest change has been the faces behind the movement. While we have added some, we have also lost some.

Many of you have probably wondered where Anna C.S. has been. Some of you may have already known that she was having major computer issues earlier. Back in May 2018, her computer finally crashed with no hope of resurrection. As a result, she has stepped down from her active role in Rebellious Writing. We miss her terribly, and hope she comes back soon!

Abby Lennah, another founder and our beloved tech guru, also stepped down from active participation earlier this year. She's still in the background and has recently been helping us draft up a website redesign that could take place later this year.

With that said, we have two social media positions available: Goodreads Coordinator and Instagram Coordinator. Because of our personnel shuffling and coordinating author requests, blog posts, and team discussions, we've been very remiss about advertising and reviewing of candidates for both positions. 

If you are interested in, or would like to know more details about both of these positions, please email the team at

In the meantime, we still have a long, dark and treacherous road ahead of us. Let us shoulder our weapons and....



  1. Wow. It’s already been a year since Rebellious Writing was founded????? That’s amazing. It’s even more amazing that this movement is still going strong and, I dare say, still growing.

    Thank you all for doing this. Thank you for starting the movement against inappropriate YA fiction. Thank you for standing up against society’s norm. You all are such a blessing to everyone who knows you! Stay strong, rebels, and keep fighting!

  2. I miss Anna a lot! Her encouragement through literally EVERYTHING has been so dearly missed. But, y'all are still going strong and I know you're making waves in the writing world. I see it so often!

    Keep going strong, Rebels. The road is long and the journey is trecherous, but I know we, as writers, can do it!

    Melissa, I don't know if you'll see this, but YOU'VE GOT THIS, GIRL!

    Abby, I know your skills are AMAZING! The website is going to look fabulous! (I mean, it already is fabulous, but I know you are AWESOME!) hopefully everything is okay. <3

    It's hard to believe it's been a year. In some ways, it feels longer and in others, not that long.

    So much has changed for all of us, I'd say. I look forward to seeing this movement go strong for years to come. <3

  3. A whole year! Wow! That time flew.

    I've loved watching this community and movement bless so many people. Knowing we're not alone is such a comfort, and I'm eager to see what new heights Rebellious Writing will soar to in the future!

  4. Whoo! Cheers to many more years to come!! <3

  5. Oh, love this y'all!

  6. AN awesome team. You guys are do so well working together! Very impressive.

  7. Happy one year blogoversary! It's been so encouraging, following you all on this rebellious writing journey. Here's to many more years of inspiring young writers to rebel against low expectations in literature!

    Micaiah @ Notebooks and Novels

  8. *raises glass of punch* To a great year, and another great year to come! :D

  9. REBELLIOUS WRITING!!!! *splatters ink everywhere in celebration*

    I remember when I first came across RW and was all “okay wow this is amazing.” I still feel the same way.

    Y’all have done such a wonderful job!!! Keep it up!!!!