Saturday 26 December 2009

FIVE Challenge: Hopes for YA

FIVE Hopes for YA

Further explanation of the FIVE Challenge here.

Here are my wishes for Young Adult Literature in 2010.

**That paranormal themed novels go the way of the Dodo for a few years. I am over supernatural, super-powered, morphing, sparkly, overheated, underheated, unusually gifted or mysterious characters. Seriously ... I am completely tapped out of tolerance. Many authors are getting published purely on premise and that's not okay. more responsible. Profit might be important but so is the quality of your product base.

**A return to contemporary novels that don't hammer ISSUES over the reader's head. If you are in any shape or form a gifted author, the ISSUE will meld with your story. It won't be the whole story.

**Bland protagonists caught between two guys. I don't know about you but I was neither 1) bland or 2) juggling boys in high school. The second point is okay if the first point is negated. However, having discussed unrequited love on my blog last week, I would like to see actual unrequited love that ends realistically. For instance...Mike P in high school never knew I was alive. See? No happy ending, ta da.

Protagonists should be interesting regardless of what happens TO them. They should be crafted well enough that should the conflict never occur they would hold your interest. Bland isn't a state of being.

**Twilight Effect...specifically a move away from boys that show their interest in the protagonist with (quite frankly) scary behaviour. While I love snarky banter and obnoxiousness, guys in books should not be put on a pedestal for being controlling, abusive (emotionally, physically, etc) or stalking. Girls don't need saving, they should be proactive and save themselves. Being an ass might make the guy's character development easier but he should be interesting regardless of his ass-like tendencies. In a nutshell, more varied, realistic and three dimensional male romantic leads. They might do wrong but it shouldn't be heralded.

**Humour is hard. I would really like to see some genuinely funny titles make their way to bookstores. Again it comes down to characterisation but I've had enough of the dark, sombre stuff. Life can be heavy and sometimes it's nice to have a break with a chortle worthy read. By funny I mean authentic situations that don't come across as 'HEY LOOK, ISN'T THIS HI-LARIOUS'.

Tomorrow... FIVE Great YA Movie Deals

FIVE Most Anticipated Titles
FIVE Great Re-reads
FIVE Great Series
FIVE Great Covers
FIVE Great Debuts


Anonymous said...

I whole-heartedly agree with you with regards to the bland protagonists and the Twilight affect thing.

I love paranormal novels, but I would like to see the novels that add the paranormal factor simply to hide a dull plot and characters (and thus don't really use the paranormal to its full extent) leave the building. Well-researched/created paranormal with the elements woven in successfully into the story along with great characters? You can most definitely stay.

Katrina Germein said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Katrina Germein said...

Sorry about deleted comment above. Mistake! Was just saying that we can't do away with all things fantastical until we have the third Monster Blood Tattoo book from David Cornish. Loved 'Foundling'.

Daisy Whitney said...

Basically you want quality stories to rise to the top and the thousandth me too to fall away along with its sparkles. I say hurray for 2010 as the year of good, funny, deep stories!

Victoria Schwab said...

Haha as a writer of books that would technically be considered paranormal, I have to hope they don't vanish entirely. HOWEVER, I completely agree, with every inch of my being, that paranormals where the paranormal factor is the sole strength, meaning the story hinges on the supernatural instead of it being one thread in a large and more intricate pattern, those need to BE GONE. Stories that don't feel the need to have strong, unique characters, complex relationships, plot, evolution, etc, BECAUSE they have a paranormal element, and that's all readers care about, those need to BE GONE.

Basically I agree. I want AMAZING STORIES, be they contemporary, historical, realism, or paranormal, to succeed.

Rhiannon Hart said...

Oh yes yes yes. I am so over PNR. It was my staple as a teen but I've had enough. Issues books I don't get too that often (Wintergirls was probably the only one I read this year) but I can see your frustration. BLAND PROTAGONISTS. ARGH. Especially when combined with a love triangle. Really, I just agree with everything you say. Publishers take note. THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN, hehe.

Donna Gambale said...

Yes! I do love paranormal... but I'd love to see just the normal stuff for awhile. (And since I'm revising a very normal novel, I'm hoping I'm ahead of that curve!)

And John C. never kissed me. Sigh.

Love these 5 lists! Thanks.

April (BooksandWine) said...

My neck hurts.... from frantically nodding in agreement! I would love to see a great unrequited love novel as well, because not every girl gets the guy, and let's face it there is not a nice guy lurking within every jerk.


GreenBeanTeenQueen said...

You and me both! These are my wishes too-won't someone please listen to us??