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Questions tagged [young-adult]

This tag should be used for questions about writing intended for readers between 12 and 18 years old. (Often abbreviated YA.) For readers ages 8-12 use [middle-grade]. For readers under 8 use [children]. For questions about characters, use [child-characters]. For questions about children or teens who are writers, use [young-author].

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23 votes
8 answers
3k views

Referring to different instances of the same character in time travel

I am writing a story that involves time travel, and I have a chapter where a character from the future interacts with his present-day self. This chapter is written from the present-day self's POV. ...
Tempo Mental's user avatar
20 votes
8 answers
8k views

What can I do if I hate my own protagonist?

So I'm writing a fantasy novel, and I have my plot fairly fleshed out, and I have my main players, my world is built, and now I've started to really flesh out my characters more. The only problem is, ...
circepix's user avatar
  • 303
18 votes
6 answers
7k views

Why is young adult romance now being written primarily in the first person?

My recollection is that when I started reading romance novels in the 1980s, the majority (perhaps 60%) were written in the third person. This included some "young adult" romances with characters in ...
Tom Au's user avatar
  • 4,405
15 votes
10 answers
2k views

How can I accurately represent young adult dialogue?

There was a recent question that caused quite a stir around here, not so much for the question itself, but more the purpose of the question. That aside, there was a valid question being asked, and it ...
Steven Drennon's user avatar
12 votes
4 answers
378 views

How to go about breaking up a looooong YA story?

A while ago, I played around with a short story idea in a genre I don't normally write (Young Adult fiction). The story took on a life of its own, growing quickly to a novella, and now is definitely ...
HedgeMage's user avatar
  • 4,485
11 votes
5 answers
3k views

How explicit can violence and sex be in a YA novel?

Many of the most popular YA novels are pretty brutal, rape and murder are a common ingredient. Many show teenagers having sex. But how far can you go, before you cross the line into adult fiction, ...
user avatar
10 votes
9 answers
72k views

How to describe an angry voice in dialogue?

I've been looking for a word to describe this tone of voice for a long time but never came across it. Now let me just spread a pinch of context. It's a first person novel, and our protagonist is very ...
H. Alley's user avatar
  • 183
9 votes
4 answers
2k views

Should I stick with American terminology in my English set young adult book?

I am writing a book that is set in England, but because I would get the book published in America I don't know what terminology to use. My main character is in the equivalent of 7th grade but in ...
McInnis 's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
248 views

When writing in a school context without ever having been to school, how do I make sure that my story is accurate within school context?

I read a lot of YA fiction, a lot of which happens to take place in schools. Recently, an idea jumped into my head for a YA-ish story and told me that it was going to take place in a school. The idea ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 1,159
9 votes
4 answers
782 views

How explicit should a YA novel be?

For a romance YA novel, how explicit can it be? Are there certain descriptions or words that shouldn't be used?
Ralph Gallagher's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
814 views

How to write a board game scene?

My book is about a girl who is a compulsive gambler, and I'm trying to write a scene where she is playing a board game with an old dude who also has a gambling problem (eventually, she wins). My ...
quinn's user avatar
  • 83
7 votes
7 answers
2k views

Using footnotes in fiction: children's book which can be enjoyed by adults

I would like to write a children's story which is appealing to both children and adults. However, the world in which the story takes place requires the use of higher vocabulary and slang (it is a real ...
writersam's user avatar
  • 719
7 votes
4 answers
644 views

Describe illustrated characters?

I'm writing a YA fantasy novel in my free time that I plan to illustrate myself. Most if not all named characters will have their 'picture' presented to the reader as soon as they are introduced. ...
Not A Vampire's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
278 views

Crossing the line from Middle-Grade to Young-Adult

I would like to followup on this excellent question which outlined differences among works for children, middle-grade, and young-adult. What are some clear differences in theme/story between children&...
Cyn's user avatar
  • 32.4k
7 votes
2 answers
906 views

What are some clear differences in theme/story between children's, middle grade, and young adult fantasy?

At the moment I'm trying to write a fantasy novel, and I think it's leaning more towards middle grade rather than children's or young adult fantasy, but I'd like to know if there are any particular ...
s.anne.w's user avatar
  • 965
7 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is mild sexualization of minors allowed in writing?

Her clothes screamed bohemia, with a prominent cleavage, leather bands running up her arms and nails painted black. In my book there is a romance between two 15-year-olds, and the book is from one of ...
A. Kvåle's user avatar
  • 4,043
6 votes
4 answers
468 views

Should my story's main obstacle be secret or common knowledge to the society?

I'm writing a teen dystopian adventure/thriller/romance novel. I've been thinking about the plot for awhile. I've got an idea I want to develop: a dystopian world where the government has gotten rid ...
Lucy's user avatar
  • 61
6 votes
4 answers
293 views

Library of Congress filing: answering "intended for children or young adults"

I'm going to submit a request for a Library of Congress Preassigned Control Number (PCN). One of the questions on the form is: Is this title intended for children or young adults? Because of the "...
Andy Giesler's user avatar
6 votes
4 answers
23k views

What is a "light novel" and how does it differ from a novella?

My friend has sent me a work to critique which he hopes to make into a light novel. I've never heard of this type of story before and a quick Google didn't give me much context about how it differs ...
Seanny123's user avatar
  • 865
6 votes
2 answers
530 views

Who decides how to classify a novel?

Young Adult fiction is distinguished from Adult fiction typically by the age of the protagonist(s) and the subject matter or experiences involved. You can, of course, have adult novels starring ...
PlutoThePlanet's user avatar
6 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is there such a thing as using too Many "I's" in a first person novel?

For example, would you say this section of copy has too many "I's" or even "my's"? I woke in a daze. A drug induced daze. I recognized it instantly, the feeling of being disconnected from my ...
Elise Carver's user avatar
6 votes
9 answers
1k views

I’m feeling overwhelmed about writing a novel, can anyone help?

I’ve always wanted to write a book. I’ve finally gained enough courage to attempt to write a small novel, 100-150 pages. I’m 13, which I’ve learned is a small problem. I hate to say it, but I’m just ...
Liz's user avatar
  • 69
6 votes
1 answer
314 views

Fantasy Series - YA or Adult protagonist?

I plan on writing a fantasy series at some point. Based on what I've read, my automatic assumption was that the protagonist of such a series would be a teenager, probably around the 17-18 year range. ...
Thomas Reinstate Monica Myron's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
1k views

A flower's head or heart?

I’m currently writing a story and one of my characters is a butterfly. In one of the scenes, she manages to run away from a bunch of hungry lizards and hides into a flower; let’s say a Zinnia. When ...
vanity's user avatar
  • 367
5 votes
5 answers
1k views

Why do Popular Fantasy Novels of Today Feature Teenagers?

This could be a misconception of mine, but I've noticed that the popular fantasy novels of today seem to nearly all have main characters who are children or teenagers. I have a list of some off the ...
Thomas Reinstate Monica Myron's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
391 views

Should I use different pen names for different audiences (non-fiction)?

I am working on three separate works for three different audiences. All are non-fiction. One is for children ages eight to twelve, another is for teens ages fourteen to twenty, and the third is for ...
K. England's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
592 views

Is having a specific town for a setting in a young-adult novel a bad thing?

I'm writing a young-adult story, that is quite clearly set in my home town, because this is where I grew up as a young adult and it is easier to write about. Everyone speaks English, but speaks French ...
Seanny123's user avatar
  • 865
5 votes
3 answers
275 views

Can I change tenses in my first person YA novel?

I'm half way through a YA science fiction novel that is told in 1st person, past tense. Currently there are two chapters in different tenses. One is 2nd person, present tense - the p.o.v. of an AI. ...
FalseEpiphany's user avatar
5 votes
5 answers
512 views

How far can insults go in a "Young Adult" novel?

In a Young Adult (>12 y. old) novel, once the obviously bad words (F-word, C-word, N-word, etc.) taken away, how far can rude language go ? For example, can I use insults like : "Go sit on a rusty ...
Babika Babaka's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
333 views

Is it possible for "weakness" to be a "virtue" in context?

I'm working on a teen romance. The event is the high school play, the "Sound of Music," in which there are two main contestants for the role of Liesl. They are designated "A" and "B," because those ...
Tom Au's user avatar
  • 4,405
5 votes
3 answers
4k views

How do I handle teenage sex in books for teenagers?

I am writing a book, in which the protagonists are two teenagers. They fell in love and it is time they were alone and had sex. As long as the book is destined for teenagers from 15-19, I would like ...
Vassilis De's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
172 views

YA Literature - Violence

I'm working on a trilogy of YA novels that revolve around a group of teenagers (aged 15, though in the made-up world, 16 is adulthood) who set off to rescue someone who has been kidnapped. When they ...
Aimee's user avatar
  • 53
4 votes
10 answers
2k views

Genre conventions: Which end do readers expect?

I need help with the concept of my story: My protagonists live in a mild dystopia. Think of your own country today ;-) They have the opportunity to kill about 20 persons, which will cause a ...
user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
1k views

Should I start my book with a declaration of undying love between my two protagonists in the very first chapter? [closed]

I know most writers like to save the love for the very end (or at least writers that I've read, let me know if you're familiar with someone who does it my way), but I have a reason why I'm writing it ...
Zohar-El Drakonis-Fleur's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
354 views

How to fill novel if you have just some moments prepared?

I read some of my old novels and realized that I often filled them with unnecessary info and pseudojokes so I could quickly rejoin my favourite moments in the planned plot. I found those moments more ...
Busspotter Penguin's user avatar
3 votes
5 answers
2k views

YA novel with old protagonist?

Edit: There have been a few very good answers and comments. The feedback I've got so far has made me question whether I'm even going into the right direction with my story. I felt like the themes and ...
MadMonkey's user avatar
  • 281
3 votes
1 answer
130 views

Is there a market for all-ages novels?

Historically, books and movies didn't always have a specific target age. While some material was just for adults, a lot of what we think of now as being for kids or teens had a more general market. ...
Cyn's user avatar
  • 32.4k
3 votes
4 answers
280 views

Where can I find a professional publisher who will accept my book?

I started writing a book at the end of my 5th grade year. My 6th grade teacher is totally against teen authors, so I stopped for a while. Then my 7th grade teacher inspired me to start again. I'm 13 ...
Angel's user avatar
  • 33
3 votes
2 answers
988 views

How to write for a certain audience?

I'm busy writing a book that I've been putting off for years. In this book the main character starts off as an 18 year old but grows up to be a young adult, sometimes she will think about when she was ...
Liza E's user avatar
  • 31
2 votes
2 answers
243 views

Wanting to write a gay kiss... for young audiences

I wanted to write a gay kiss at the close end of my third book. I already started their chemistry with each other on the first and more in the second now it's leading up to the kiss. I have a ton of ...
Zhane Staten Reeder's user avatar
2 votes
5 answers
7k views

How many pages make a chapter in a chapter book?

I am writing my first chapter books for an older audience around 18+ and I need a little help with knowing when one characters point of view should end and the next begin. Can anyone help me?
Marella's user avatar
  • 29
2 votes
4 answers
920 views

When writing a YA novel, how necessary is it to include LGBT characters?

I am attempting to write a YA novel, and I keep wondering if it is important these days to include at least one LGBT character. So far, no LGBT character has 'organically' come up in the story, and ...
MRichards's user avatar
2 votes
4 answers
217 views

Are My Novels Middle-Grade or Young Adult? Having Trouble Figuring It Out

I have written and thoroughly reviewed/edited three novels that I don't know if they would be marketed as Middle Grade or Young Adult. I am currently working on a fourth. Okay, the first novel is ...
user avatar
2 votes
4 answers
2k views

How to choose ideal number of main characters?

As I already mentioned in my previous question, I'm writing a novel with personages both that I created and some already created by others (well, I wrote that when I was younger and now I just ...
Busspotter Penguin's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
4k views

First person from the point of view of a child

Is it ok to use first person when the one speaking in the narration is a child? I guess it doesn't matter too much when the narration is about things that the child hears from other people or he is ...
rraallvv's user avatar
  • 133
2 votes
3 answers
128 views

seeking advice - screenwriter looking to write novel

All. I'm looking for some advice. I'm interested in writing a young adult mystery novel, but I don't believe I'm a good writer in the traditional sense. My background is in screenwriting, so my ...
Andy's user avatar
  • 23
2 votes
1 answer
4k views

What is the average word count for a scene in a chapter?

Does the average scene-word-count lessen for a YA/children's novel and increase for, say, an adult thriller?
Frank Feldman's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
192 views

Is my Fantasy YA series idea interesting and unique? [closed]

For a while now I’ve had an idea for a YA series brewing in my mind. The series takes place in an urban setting much like our world now, but each human has the ability to wield an Element ...
maislecakes's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
137 views

How to Categorize Novel Set in 1930s where people got married at 11+ years

I am writing fiction novel with historical event as backdrop. During 1930s British India people got married at 11+ years old and had full adult responsibilities. My story is a memoir of a fictional ...
Marium's user avatar
  • 627
2 votes
2 answers
8k views

What are some rich but respectful ways to describe various skin colors?

Say I have a kid's book with children of varying skin tones: a boy with British/Germanic background, a girl with Indian parents in the middle point of Indian skin tones, a girl with a Germanic ...
MiraAstar's user avatar
  • 323