Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Demographic Research - Fine-tuning the Story

One of the things that's really cool about my current job is that I tutor my book's demographic - young teens. Granted, the first book is a bit girlie (which may or may not change in editing).  I won't lie.  The second however, is much more gender neutral (at least the three chapters I've written so far).  I'm not sure what direction it will take.
Still, tutoring has definitely given me an insight I wouldn't have had working elsewhere. Its easy to forget what you thought about when you were 13, 15 or even 18.  Life feels very different from that side of 20.  Hormones rage, and everything feels as though it is the epitome of an issue, an event, or a relationship.  It also feels like it will never end.  That perspective of the world is very important when you are writing a young adult novel.  It is what makes the story accessible and the characters believable to the reader.
Some might read the Twilight series for example and find it way too maudlin, but the truth is, it captures an emotional moment - one full of the torment of supposedly forbid and possibly doomed love.  It is capturing that moment which is crucial to the success or failure of a book, whatever moment it is which the author is attempting to render.  With any luck (and a lot of work), I'll be just as successful as Ms. Meyer in capturing my moment in the context I created.

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