Today — late last night, technically — I was over at We Heart YA talking about how YA, like Pinocchio, is a real boy, goshdarnit!
It all started with an email I received from a fellow writer. Once you read the WHYA post, you’ll see. Anyway, that was a year and a half ago, and I’ve come a long way in terms of how I view writing and genre and all that. Still, I was struck by my original response to that writer, and I thought I would share part of it here.
Admittedly, I still struggle with the genre thing, because I come from the viewpoint you do: literary fiction is king, and genre is like the court jester. Entertaining, but meaningless. That said, if I can bridge the two — if I can entertain without compromising quality of writing, without losing meaning — then I think I will have accomplished something. Something greater than just another book that Twilight-crazed girls will read, and something more than just another book that only other aspiring writers will read. (Gross exaggeration on both counts, but you get my drift.)
That’s actually why I stopped working on the paranormal YA story I brought in last night. Because as much fun as I was having, I wasn’t sure what the point was. Believe it or not, the “New Adult” web series I wrote? Had a point, at least for me. It was very much about being 20-something and wanting to be so much more. Being stuck in transition. And the “New Adult” book I’m working on now? Also has a point for me. I don’t want to do genre just for the sake of genre (which is sort of what last night’s YA story was) so now I’m trying to figure out how to take the best of both worlds and make them into something awesome.
A year and a half later, a lot has changed, but that’s still my mission. Produce Something Awesome.
Easier said than done, no?