Friday, 29 April 2011

Y is for YA

Random person: What kind of books do you write?
Me: Young Adult books.
Random person: Er... Are you going to write an adult book?
Me: Why?
Random person: Because that means you're a real writer. You'll probably get published quicker with a real book.
Me: *blinks* No. It doesn't work like that. Besides, a real writer writes.
Random person: But why YA?

And that is the question. Why do I write YA novels?

I write YA because those are the voices that come to me. The ones who wake me up in the night. Who want their stories told. They're the stories that interest me. The ones I want to tell. To know. To share. To inspire.

Teenage years are the time things will probably be the most raw. Everything is a first. Everything a discovery. A snapshot in time where, for a moment, you can do whatever you want to do. Be whoever you want to be. To feel. To learn. To love. To live in the moment.

I won't say I'll never write an 'adult' book. I read them. I enjoy them. But, in the end, I think it comes down to this:

"You have to write the book that wants to be written." Madeleine L'Engle

What about you. Why do you write a certain genre?


SharleneT said...

Sometimes, it's better to NOT listen to random people's questions about why you do what you do. Just do it. Follow your muse because only you can understand it.

Hello, fellow A-Z Challenger! Here's my latest entry. Come visit either of my blogs when you can and leave some comment love:

Y is for Yoni (A-Z)
Twitter: @SolarChief

Jessica Bell said...

I really can't get into YA. and I feel guilty because there is so much of it out there!!! :-/ I purchased 'shiver' recently as a sort of experiment. A friend of mine insisted I read it. That I would like it despite me not liking YA, not werewolves. LOL. Have you read it? I write literary. You think I'll like it?

Renae said...

Well said Lindsay! I love that everything is a just makes the stories so endearing to me. I can't imagine writing anything else.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Why do I write YA? You mean there are other genres?

I love the genre. What more can I say (other than what I've already posted on)? I love the raw emotions and honesty that you find in YA.

M.J. Fifield said...

There are some great books in that picture you've posted.

I write primarily fantasy. I don't know why. It's just what I've always done.

Regina said...

I just think it is sad when someone doesn't understand that when you write, you are a writer no matter the genre. When you write and you believe in yourself. You are a writer first and foremost no matter the outcome. Published or unpublished.

I write both YA and Adult but that doesn't classify me as anything different than any other person who writes. Just sad. Great post!

Carla said...

I love Madeleine L'Engle's quote! I write for children--picture books through teenagers. Great post!


Hannah Kincade said...

I'm dark and twisty, that's why I write Horror-ish things. ;)

I love YA, even before it became "cool" to read it. I've never ventured far from it.

I mostly write for adults but I have a novel in the workings that is YA. For lovers of teen fiction, we all eventually delve into it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Funny how some people think of young adult as kids books. I write science fiction because it's my favorite genre in all things.

Jeffrey Beesler said...

If you attach words together in the syntax of a sentence, and multiply each sentence by a million fold, you are truly a writer. Those who don't believe you are a writer are probably just not certain of the process.

Thanks for sharing, and it's a pleasure to meet you via the A-Z Challenge!

Melissa J. Cunningham said...

Great post. You sound so much like me. I write YA too, and a bit of MG, but those voices, dang it, let me sleep! =)

Katrina L. Lantz said...

Lindsay, great post! I think most people have a very limited understanding of the genres in the publishing industry. I'm still learning all the nuances. But it's a shame people think writing for a younger audience makes a book less 'real.' I'm SO happy you write YA b/c you write the touched-for-the-very-first-time perspective in a way that gives adults the tinglies.

Jessica, I recently read Shiver and I loved it (though I tend to like most YA). The writing is very good, so a literary writer like yourself will appreciate that. I love the way she reinvented werewolves.

Holly Vance said...

At the risk of sounding Freudian, I think it's important to stay in touch with the child inside. If you can connect with the "young adult" in you and articulate it--bravo.

ali said...

I love that quote, probably because it's so, so true for me. Like you, the voices in my head are teens. It's just the way it is. Sometimes they're kids, but still usually around 12-14. So even my MG is more YA, lol.

I *wish* I could write adult, because I think it would be cool and awesome and I could tell such different stories but . . . yeah. The voices in my head are definitely teens.