This is a nice interview posted just last week by the crew at Freshly Squeezed Reads as part of my Honourable Mention in their #C1Blitz competition from earlier this year – click here: www.freshlysqueezed.com
It’s quite a different view of my character Carly and the background to writing my YA novel, Facing Up. Despite the Very Serious Face in the accompanying photo (car accidents are a pretty serious sort of subject, after all), there is humour and some silliness in the book, especially between Carly and her best friend Suzie. So please don’t be afraid to have a read of Facing Up!
I had a great time in this competition, where authors from all over the world could enter the first chapter of an unpublished (or self-published) Young Adult (YA) novel. Around 73 hopeful and talented authors entered, to have their first chapters critiqued by five of their peers, at least three professionals, and teenage readers who participated in a live panel and also sent in their reviews of various first chapters.
The teenagers had some of the best comments – some sounded like they were at least twenty years older in language and reviewing abilities! This is the teen panel review for the 40 or so early-bird entries, shown live during the digital Writers Festival in February this year. It was nerve-wracking listening to the commentary on my own novel, but it put a huge smile on my face to hear the two teenage girls say they’d like to read the whole book!
The Twitter party celebration was held on a Sunday in April this year, and it was a gloriously rambunctious flurry of tweets back and forth as winners were announced. I was very excited to win an Honourable Mention in the Writers’ section, one of the toughest audiences, but fair as well!
Many thanks to the generous efforts of Vicki Renner for the interview, and herself, Michelle Coleman and Belinda Crawford for the enormous amount of time and effort which they have dedicated to Freshly Squeezed and the promoting of new YA authors. They are all YA authors themselves, either published or about to be (congratulations by the way, guys!) Check them out here!
YA is not always appreciated by adult readers or publishers and authors of other genres, but I can tell you that it’s here to stay. It’s not only a bridge between childhood reading and a life as an adult reader, but it also explores some major topics and makes teens (and adults) think and imagine and empathise. And no, not all YA is fantasy or romance or dystopia – there’s subjects and genres of all shapes, sizes and colours!