About Catherine Linka
Catherine Linka has been immersed in books her whole life, most recently as a writer and bookseller. She’s the author of the young adult novel WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE as well as the dystopian duology A GIRL CALLED FEARLESS and A GIRL UNDONE. Catherine lives with her partner in Puget Sound.
I was almost expelled in high school for being too verbal which basically meant I was too outspoken. I didn’t deal well with idiotic rules, and at my girls’ boarding school there were rules for everything like: “You are required to wear rain boots on rainy days.” My parents never had rules, they had expectations which were much tougher to live up to, but at least I got to exercise my own judgement. I fought any rule I thought was stupid, and ended up having lots of “chats” with the Headmaster and Dean of Residence. I got in way more trouble than the girls who were smoking dope, drinking or sneaking off campus to meet guys.
My dad always assumed I could do anything a guy could. He took me hiking and backpacking in the Sierras, and taught me how to use an axe, which was great until I was thirteen, and he sent me over to another campsite to help some helpless college guys. Mortifying. He taught me how to paint a house and drive a stick, and pushed me to get a masters degree in business. Because he never believed that there was anything I couldn’t do because I was a girl, I grew up believing that, too.
I grew up in Northern California, and my dad loved the outdoors, so we’d go tide pooling, or hike out to the elephant seal colony or to Point Lobos to look for sea otters. He took us to Mount Lassen to see the cinder cone and to Devil’s Post Pile to see the basalt columns, and we’d go backpacking in Yosemite every year. My love of wildlife and dramatic landscapes definitely came from these experiences. I’ve been lucky enough to travel to amazing places like the Arctic, Antarctica, the Amazon, the Galapagos, Iceland and Japan. Still on my list? Australia and Tasmania!