This isn't an existential question, like are you writing for yourself, or are you a sell-out? (Both great questions, however, but maybe for another post.) This is a question of AUDIENCE. There are a lot of questions to consider when thinking about who will be reading your novel, particularly if you write YA.
The one I'm struggling with right now is:
Is what I'm writing appropriate for the age group who will be reading my book? Is it appropriate for the age group BELOW the one who will be reading my book?
Do you think it's necessary to consider the age group below the one your book is intended for? Is it their parent's responsibility to keep their children from reading a book that's "too old" for them?
When I was growing up, I read a lot of adult books because there just wasn't the breadth of YA that there is now. I learned a lot more actual facts from books about sex and drugs and relationships than I did from life from age 13-16. Life was full of contradictions, rumors, locker-room boasting. Life was scary. Books were safe.
Today's YA is a different animal from what my generation experienced. There's sex, pregnancy, death, affairs with teachers... a lot more like what kids today experience in school. I've gone off on a tangent here, but these are the kids I'm writing for. I need to remember that.
And I'm going to try not to eff them up any more than they already are.
“All writers are vain, selfish and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives lies a mystery. Writing a book is a long, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.” ~George Orwell
I'm a YA writer who delves into urban fantasy, paranormal and romance, and who loves reading good books almost as much as writing them.
When not writing—or working—I enjoy daydreaming, drinking tea, and walking in cemeteries. I used to spend the rest of my time checking my inbox for manuscript requests, but am now proudly represented by Rosemary Stimola, of Stimola Literary Studio.