Author Spotlight: Michelle Quach

Oct. 1, 2021

We are excited to feature author Michelle Quach and her debut young adult rom-com, NOT HERE TO BE LIKED ( Katherine Tegen Books (September 14, 2021).  Enter to win a copy!

cover art © Fevik

Tell us about yourself and how you came to write for teens.

I loved reading as a kid, and I always wanted to be a writer. But for the longest time, I couldn’t finish a draft of anything, so I became a graphic designer instead. I started writing again after doing a couple design-related 100 Days challenges that made me realize I did have time for a little creative work each day. Writing for teens specifically felt like coming full circle, since books and literature meant so much to me when I was younger.

Congrats on your debut young adult novel, Not Here to Be Liked! Tell us about it and what inspired you.

Thank you! Not Here to Be Liked is a rom-com about a girl who wants to be editor-in-chief of her high school paper, a boy who gets picked instead, and what happens when she leads a feminist movement against him…only to fall for him! I love a good enemies-to-lovers romance, so that was really my main goal at the outset. The feminist themes, which were loosely inspired by my own experiences with sexism as a teen, actually came in later.

Was your road to publication long and winding, short and sweet, or something in between?

I spent many years not writing, so in that sense, my road was long! Once I started drafting seriously, it took about two years to complete the manuscript, and then it was relatively quick from there: I got my agent through PitMad and we sold the book two months later.

Did you have a playlist when writing this book?

I actually like to write in silence, but I did listen to a lot of mxmtoon and The Regrettes for inspiration.

What projects are you working on now?

I’m working on another YA contemporary romance that takes place in a similar setting, but with totally different characters.

What advice would you give to your younger self? Is this the same as you'd give to aspiring authors?

To my younger self, I would say to stop trying to figure out what you want to do for the rest of your life and instead just make sure whatever you’re doing right this second is what you want to be doing. I think that advice applies to aspiring authors, too—it’s okay to work towards a big goal like getting published, but only as long as you’re still having fun on a day-to-day basis.

What is one thing most people don't know about you?

Here’s a Halloween-inspired one, since it’s now October—I don’t like Reese’s Pieces. I know, it’s blasphemous.

Where can people find you online?

I’m on Twitter at @michellequach, Instagram at @_michellequach, and my website is

Michelle Quach (rhymes with “rock”) is a graphic designer and writer living in Los Angeles. She’s Chinese Vietnamese American and a graduate of Harvard University, where she studied history and literature. She loves rom-coms, characters who don't always do the right thing, and any dog that kind of looks like her dog. Not Here to Be Liked is her first novel.

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  1. This sounds like such a fun enemies to lovers teen romance - looking forward to reading :)
    Megan S.

  2. I can't wait to read this book. I've wanted to read it since I first heard about it.

  3. Sounds like a great story! Congrats!

  4. This books sounds so great. I can't wait to read it!

  5. Your book sounds so timely, Michelle. While sexism isn't as much a part of today's world as it was in the past, your story should touch girls where they live. Great post!

  6. Congratulations, Michelle! Your book sounds like a wonderful one to read right now. Best wishes!


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