When I was in elementary/middle school teachers would confiscate my books because I was reading instead of listening to them. But I just couldn’t help myself. The story would get so good I could not put it down. I longed for LEAP or other standardized testing days because that was the only time I was allowed to read what ever I wanted in class.
I remember staying up late reading Christopher Pike, R.L. Stine, Encyclopedia Brown, or The Baby-Sitter’s Club. Once my parents fell asleep I would sit next to a night-light in my room to read. I was too old for a night-light but it was a good source of light to read from and didn’t make my parents suspicious.
While reading I wanted to be the characters or one of their friends. I wanted to be IN the book and a part of the story. I would adopt the mannerisms or sayings from my favorite characters. After the story ended I was so sad. I would use my imagination to continue the story in my head. I guess that’s why I like series books.
As an adult I still read young adult books but now I appreciate the end of the story. I find a great ending can be euphoric in some ways. Young adult books also make me nostalgic for my youth. It was a time when you had no real problems but everything seemed to be the end of the world.
There is so much a writer can do with a YA story. Kids have imaginations that are willing to accept anything. Life and experiences haven’t inhibited their imaginations yet. Whole worlds with different rules and laws can be created in these types of books. Plus an author can add different genres to every story. A YA book can be fantasy, sci-fi, romance, mystery, thriller, comedic and many more all rolled into one. And if it’s written just right it can conjure just as many feelings as well.
I’m really looking forward to this year’s BookExpo America. To meet other adults who share my passion for YA. I can’t wait to hear the authors speak at the Children’s Book & Author Breakfast; or go to sessions dedicated to children’s and YA books or hear how editors knew a certain YA title was perfect for their list. Here are few more sessions I can’t wait to attend:
While at BEA I will be tweeting about what I learn and what kind of swag I’ll be snagging. Follow me on Twitter here.
Hopefully my apartment won’t look like this after BEA:
But then again…