Articulate and informative, Deborah gave the audience some concrete tools to use in writing for the young adult reader. Her presentation was a companion talk to go with her new craft book, WRITING YOUNG ADULT FICTION FOR DUMMIES.
Which has a new book trailer out this week:
In honor of its debut, she is offering a “Free First 20 Pages Critique Giveaway” – I would very much like to win!
On to a few highlights from her talk…
I loved the way she obviously respects adolescent readers and treasures that very particular developmental stage of life as a time of great feeling and passion. She reminded us oldies in the audience that most teen behaviors and attitudes (of over-reaction and exaggeration as well as grandiose perceptions self, for example) – in other words, the things that make parents nuts – are a natural part of adolescence and growing up.
In writing for teens, we can hope to build vocabulary, open and expand minds and imaginations, and create life-long reading habits; BUT she reminded us why teens read… to be entertained!
As Deborah said, “Show, Don’t Preach.”
A few more tidbits from her talk:
- Most teens judge-act-react-deal with consequences. They don’t over-analyze the why of what they do.
- Think big, push hard. This is what teens do – and what authors should do in the books written for them.
- Know your character’s goal, flaw and strength that will help them overcome their flaw.
I plan to share my thoughts on her craft book later this week. Be sure to check out her Dear Editor blog where she answer a multitude of questions from real live writer-readers. You could get your questions answered too!
Sarah Wones Tomp
WRITING ON THE SIDEWALK