Young Adult fiction is wildly popular. I write it, and I know several dozen other writers that do too. It’s becoming the front runner for the biggest share of sales across the whole book/ebook market. So what makes it so popular? And how does one write the YA genre well enough to get a share in the market?
You have to be in their mindset. The YA mindset. See, I have this theory that people stop ageing. I mean, yeah, sure, chronologically we ‘grow’ old. But how many people do you know in their 60’s, 70’s or 80’s who actually act like it? My guess is not many. It’s because people stop ageing. We get to a certain level of maturity or chronological age and then poof. Things stop developing, we think as we did at that age, we just add more experience to help reason our decision making. So what does this mean for writing effective YA stories? (more…)
Although I spend most of my weekly wonders looking to the skies, or pulling up rugs and checking what secrets are hidden under there. I decided to do something different this week.
As a fantasy and science fiction writer I have to create entire worlds from scratch. The level of detail needed for that can be overwhelming. One of the things I spent time researching when writing my novel was unusual festivals. I needed to create some rituals around a funeral and a couple of festival events. What I wanted was the detail, the random intricacies of odd celebrations – what are the traditions, what ‘things’ do they have and do in these festivals. This research has done so much more – my head is exploding with ideas, so I had to share this bonkers list.
This has made me question why we obsessively celebrate certain things, How these festivals come into play – what happened to cause the worship of these things, and more importantly what considerations do I need to make about the history and creation of festivals in my own world and stories.
Hope you find these as useful as I did. Here are the most bizarre festivals I found and some of them really, truly are, bonkers! (more…)
My favourite genre without exception is YA. I love, love, love it. I know I’m an adult, but can’t I just pretend I stopped ageing at 16? To be honest, I think it’s probably true anyway.
I adore the innocents of it, the newness of life and every adult experience they have is difficult and I really love the fight and drive the kids have. But more than anything, I adore the fact that they never give up hope, and generally speaking the hero wins out. Guilty pleasure or what?!
Well, for fans of the YA genre, this will blow your mind. If you haven’t ever read a YA book then I guarantee you can find one on this list. (more…)
Last week, I wrote a piece of flash fiction in Writespiration #55, about a city in which the adults were kidnapped by Hunters. Several of you asked me to finish the story, something which blew me away I was so shocked. But I’ve written on. I decided to name the story Adultland. If you would like to read Part I, it’s only short and you can do so here. Or here, where I will collate everything I write. I can only apologise that part II is so long, I’m currently a plotter writing in a panster world…So I don’t know where this story will end up, or how long it will be I have never ‘just written’ without a plan or a synopsis so if this ends badly, be kind! Here goes an adventure into the unknown… Hope you enjoy the ride. (more…)
Giants are all over fiction stories like fairytales such as Jack and the Beanstalk and the BFG, but what about actual giants? You know, the ones that lived and breathed on planet Earth? Some argue it’s just another conspiracy. But I wonder if they saw a giant skeleton, knew about the ones hidden in the Smithsonian, heard about the theory connecting the Annunaki and Nephilim and the references littered in the Bible, whether they might change their mind… (more…)
I spend a lot of time sharing things I learn about the writing process. But after some lengthy discussions with fellow blogger Ali, on what inspires us she instructed encouraged me to begin sharing some of the more ‘strange and unusual’ things I find inspiring.
As a Fantasy and Sci-Fi writer whilst my own imagination is useful, it sometimes needs a little help. Which is why I spend a lot of time researching the strange, unusual or controversial – I find it provokes lots more story ideas than the mundane. (more…)
There’s something wrong with my opening chapter. I’ve edited it eight times, two of those were major overhauls, the rest tweaks. But still… just plain wrong, and the closer I get to the end of draft one (and I am real close now) the more preoccupied I become with the first chapter. I figured the best way to work out what was wrong, was to study the masters. Examine the books in my particular genre that have made it, and see how they do it. And you know what… They have a formula. They all have a set of things in common. I’m not suggesting I need to follow their formula exactly, I still want to be unique, but I can at least learn from it. (more…)