Norfolk

Norwich teenager writes book with favourite author

Taryn Everdeen and Carolyn Meyer Image copyright Taryn Everdeen
Image caption Taryn said Carolyn Meyer had become her work partner and mentor but most of all her friend

A teenager has written a book with her favourite author from childhood after befriending the 84-year-old across the generations and thousands of miles.

Taryn Everdeen, from Norwich, wrote to Carolyn Meyer in Albuquerque, New Mexico, three years ago, aged 15, to thank her for her historical novels.

Meyer replied and this summer they spent a month together in the US writing a book partly set in Norfolk.

"We come from different backgrounds but clicked so well," said Taryn, now 18.

"She's my mentor and work partner but I see her as my friend more than anything else."

'Immediate connection'

Meyer, who has published more than 60 books for children, had never worked with another writer but was "blown away" by the letter.

"Every now and then someone comes along with whom I have a strong and immediate connection regardless of age, gender and background," she told Taryn.

She suggested a "vague notion" of working together.

Image copyright Taryn Everdeen
Image caption Taryn stayed with Meyer, pictured in the teenager's dungarees, at her apartment in Albuquerque

Meyer visited Norfolk last year and the pair recently spent a month writing together at Meyer's apartment during Taryn's gap-year travels.

They also took a road trip and went to an open-mic night, where Meyer performed a comedy routine.

"I can talk to her about pretty much all the things I talk to my other friends about," said Taryn.

Image copyright Taryn Everdeen
Image caption Meyer visited Taryn in Norfolk in 2018

Meyer added: "The age difference was, believe it or not, irrelevant.

"There's several generations in there and to be able to get our thinking in the same groove, I don't know quite how, but it has happened."

The time-travel novel, which is a first draft, features a teenage boy in present-day US and a girl living in Happisburgh, Norfolk, in the 1500s.

Meyer said it would be her last book for young adults, having launched a new career as a comedian.

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