THERE'S a waitlist for one particular book by a special author at Papamoa College.

About 30 students are on the waitlist for In Black Ink written by their very own Year 10 dean and teacher Jenna Mackay.

Luckily, the school has three copies.

"One student came to me and said 'I've waited six weeks for this!' I get them to give me a debrief and they tell me things like 'I can't believe this happened', or 'Frankie and Adam just had their first kiss!', it's nice to see those reactions," Jenna says.


Jenna is right in the thick of the teenage mindset being a high school teacher (teaching Years 9 and 10). She gets to hear all their conversations and knows what's important to young people.

She can also remember what it's like to be a teenager when everything is big and exciting.

"It's about a time in your life about where you are not sure where you are headed and your connections with people are probably more important.

"My goal for the book is for teenagers to connect and that adults feel like teenagers again."

Jenna, from Maungatapu, wants adults to be reminded of those good times.

"I feel adults forget that they too were once really invested into certain ideas and relationships."

In Black Ink is a love and coming-of-age story. It's about Frankie, an American teenager who is in her last year of high school, and her four friends. She falls for Adam, but GW Bush declares war in Iraq and their lives change.

Jenna wrote the book while on maternity leave.


"As I flicked through the MTV music channels, three consecutive songs gave me the idea for my first novel. Once I returned to work I mostly wrote during weekends and in the holidays."

Jenna has completed a second book and is currently working on the third (she's also pregnant with her third child).

"I dedicated the book to our children as a reminder to always enjoy life's moments and ... be a bit fearless. You have got to enjoy your life moments, you need to be creating memories for when you are grey and old."

In Black Ink was published with Austin Macauley Publishers earlier this year and the second batch is out. It is available on Amazon, Fishpond, Mighty Ape and Booktopia.

There will be a book launch with Jenna Mackay on Sunday, September 16 at Papamoa Library from 11am-1pm.