For a long time, I wrote only young adult (YA) novels. My debut, Dessert First, was a contemporary realistic YA, and the novel I’m revising now, Just Deal, is a YA contemporary fantasy.
Life is short. Enjoy Dessert First
But it takes me so long to write and revise those YA novels, especially if I get well into a project in the meantime, before finding out it isn’t working. (As has happened with a couple of manuscripts between those two novels.)
In this week’s “Clearest Picture Ever” of Mars, for example, it’s clear:
Mars looks disappointed in me because I don’t write faster.
I even went through an entire MFA program at Vermont College of Fine Arts in “Writing for Children and Young Adults” without ever branching out from the young adult part: Every one of the five semesters, my workshop piece was a new YA novel opening or a YA short story, and every creative manuscript I worked on with my many advisors was YA.
I get to work with the incomparable Martha Brockenbrough there, who writes everything and does it brilliantly—including her fierce, feminist, fairy-tale-infused YA fantasy Into the Bloodred Woods out on November 2.
about my latest chapter, too—writing something new. It feels like a stretch for me, but stretching is good.