Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Writing for Young Adults

The Nancy Drew Mystery Stories were my favorites
If you are thinking about writing fiction for young adults, start, as you should any writing project, by reading. Re-read your favorite, classic novels from your youth. Then read some contemporary novels. Notice the vocabulary, sentence structure, paragraph length, dialogue, plot structure (each chapter, section and book as a whole), grammar, and details included, as well as those left out. Pay particular attention to the age group the book is targeting and how you think the author successfully accomplished that task.

To help notice the craft behind what you're reading and learn how to better recreate it yourself, look at this condensed cheat sheet from the Dummies series.

Kay E. Vandergrift offers an incredible resource with this Young Adult Literature Page. There is a thorough explanation of what Young Adult Literature can and should do, as well as links and resources on everything from fairy tales to female and male coming of age stories to feminist background reading.

For more on writing young adult literature, read Katie Crouch and Grady Hendrix’s thoughts on writing The Magnolia League.

As readers or writers of young adult literature, what would you recommend?

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