Making the Case for Young Adult Fiction

Many readers and authors are in two minds over developments in the Young Adult (YA) fiction genre. Past debates have claimed that the YA market is becoming repetitive.

Personally, I see very little evidence for that. At least I think it’s fair to say that all the big hitters since Harry Potter have proven highly original in their characters, story lines and world building.

Of course, I don’t mean to say that copycats don’t exist in this genre. Of course they do.

Much like in any other genres, some writers may decide to write a particular kind of story modelled on one of the big hitters in the faint hope to achieve similar success.

Like a fake Gucci handbag, those works leaning on the big brands are often only a shadow of the real thing. Doesn’t mean nobody enjoys reading them.

It also doesn’t mean that it’s not possible to write new, innovative YA fiction. Of course it is. It all depends on how the story is conceived and how well it’s written.

Personally, I am convinced that there is still endless possibilities for new YA fiction to be innovative and gripping.

For example, I am currently writing my own work of YA fiction.

Whilst I am not planning on marketing myself as a YA author, the story that came into my head when I first started planning my New World Project simply sits best in that genre.

I am not writing it because I hope to cash in on the genre, the age group (15+) or a blueprint structure I may have gleaned from one of the big successes.

I am writing it the way I conceived of the idea. I love my characters and the challenges they face in a world so very different from the one we take for granted.

Feeling myself get into a state of flow when I am writing down their conversations, thoughts, hopes and dreams is a beautiful thing.

I do it for the buzz.

Stephen King

As far as I’m concerned, ‘The Dream Parade’ came to me fully formed with characters and their story lines.

I have no trouble writing this story because it’s already fully formed in my head and my job as writer is to put it into a tangible form that can be enjoyed by my readers. That’s it.

‘The Dream Parade’ is planned for publication in 2017. Below an excerpt for your enjoyment:

Grabbing my Quantum Pad from the storage unit, I let my body drop heavily back onto the bed. Scanning my fingerprint, the Q-Pad came to glowing life, eerily illuminating my thumbs as they keyed in the ultra-safe password required for full access to my apps and files. I had peace of mind knowing that, thanks to quantum technology, my password would never be corrupted and that the secrets I shared with the device would be locked into place for all eternity. Opening an incognito window into the New World Intranet I typed ‘dreams’ into the search box. I also searched for ‘meaning of dreams’, ‘impossible dreams’, ‘mysterious dreams’ and ‘dream interpretation’ at the same time. Within seconds the searches concluded and spat out thousands of sites which presumed to hold answers to my questions. None of them did. I found definitions of the words I had searched for and detailed information about the science of dreams and their meaning. However, no matter how many sites I queried, the strange objects I saw in my dreams didn’t come up in my intranet searches and I failed to extract meaning from the outlandish items, gadgets and other undefinable things which frequently haunted the unsettling landscape of my dreams.

‘The Dream Parade’ © C.S. Knight,  2015

Image Attribution:By greyloch from Washington, DC, area, U.S.A. (The Child-like Empress *Explored*) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons


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