Status: I already know that tomorrow is going to be a 10 or 12 hour day.
What’s Playing on the XM or iPod right now? SILENT NIGHT By Nat King Cole
As the young adult genre continues to do well, it’s no surprise that a lot of authors who write for the adult market might want to try their hand at a YA novel. This evening I finished up a client manuscript and then read a couple of submissions.
Several of them were from authors looking to do just that. I passed on two of them because the writers hadn’t nailed the YA voice. It’s hard to pinpoint and clearly explain to the writer what exactly is off about the voice but ultimately, the character felt too experienced and capable in the story to be a teen.
In other words, the writer had imposed too much of an adult perspective into the narration. It’s a tough balance and all I can say is that for me as the reader, it just feels off or unconvincing. And it’s tough to correct because even a good critique reader might not be able to explain to the writer about how to fix it. I know that if I had to explain it to these two passes, I’d be hard pressed to give concrete feedback the writer would find helpful.
So if you are a writer looking to make that transition, be sure to read a lot in the YA genre and maybe even have a teen or teens on board as part of your critique group. After all, they would know best.