Clare Guthrie

is writing her first novel

What makes it YA?

Recently reading a 2013 article about The 8 Habits of Highly Successful Young-Adult Fiction Authors and its contents lead me to reflect on my experience of what makes YA.

The article considers what I think we all appreciate, that YA is not defined solely by whether it’s main characters are teens. Rather, the novel must actually sees the world through teen eyes. This is certainly what I am doing in my novel, grounding it deeply in a teenage point of view.

John Green’s The Fault in our Stars is mentioned in the article, and I loved this novel. As the article comments, our identification with YA stories is based on their emotional truth, regardless of whether it is the sweet falling in love of Hazel and Gus or  the decisions that Katnis has to make, in circumstances outside our experience, but very identifiable none-the-less.

The final suggestion made is about getting input from real teenagers about your writing and in this area I have a definite head start with my two teenage daughters.

Now if only I can get my novel ready for them to review while they are still teenagers.

Got a go!



3 comments on “What makes it YA?

  1. breenysbooks
    May 26, 2017

    I agree! I do think it’s easier for me to write YA because I’m in that age range, but anyone can write YA if it’s grounded in the multitude of teenage experiences.

    I’m a fellow writer who’s new to blogging, and am very impressed by your blog. I was wondering if you had any tips for newbie bloggers.

    If you have the time, please check out my blog @breenysbooks. I’d love any feedback. Have a wonderful day.

    • clareiswrite
      May 28, 2017

      Thanks for commenting. Looking at your blog I think I should be asking you for tips. I’m jealous of any time spent away from the novel I’m writing. I’m on the 2nd draft now and really starting to gain momentum. My plan is to get more active with blogging and social media once I have the 3rd draft done. Perhaps we can catch up then.

      • breenysbooks
        May 28, 2017

        Of course! Good luck with your 3rd draft.

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This entry was posted on May 26, 2017 by in Uncategorized.
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