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What I'm Learning
Hi, I'm Chelsea! I’m on a mission to help you find joy and goodness in every day.
On this blog we talk about the big things (like chasing dreams) and the small things (like what books we're reading) because happiness comes in all sizes.
I’ll be answering your questions tomorrow–feel free to leave any last minute ones here! One of the questions someone emailed me was about why I chose to write a young-adult novel as opposed to an adult novel. I loved that question and thought it deserved it’s own blog post! So let’s do it.
Young-adult literature is definitely getting the recognition it deserves lately due to Hollywood. The Spectacular Now, The Fault in Our Stars, Divergent…all young-adult novels.
These novels (and now, movies) don’t simply draw the attention of young adults, but they also draw attention from every age group and walk of life. Why is that? One would think that after 20, the gap between what happens in YA novels and what readers are interested in would be growing wider by the day. Obviously, that’s not the case. Why?
There are certain things in life that, once they happen, they can never happen again. The first time you fall in love. The first time you do something rebellious. The first time you make a decision that terrifies you. The first time someone breaks your heart. Sure, these things will happen over and over throughout your life, but there’s only one first. Sometimes it’s a good first, sometimes it’s a bad first, but once it happens, you’ll never have that first again.
It’s nice to be able to re-live the magic of those firsts. It’s great to watch a character fall stupidly in love and then make a ton of mistakes because it’s the first time she’s ever been in love. It’s wonderful to be able to recall your own version of that story with the fondness of hindsight.
Because there are still a ton of “firsts” that you are totally unprepared for.
Buying a house, having a family, learning how to budget money, figuring out how to do life with another person, stumbling through careers, figuring out what the heck you actually want to do with your life…no matter how prepared you think you are in life, you never really are. And it’s nice to watch some characters stumble through life, because you can totally relate to that.
It’s incredibly emotional.
If you read about a grown man getting his heart broken, it’s easy to be cynical. But to read about a teenage boy getting his heart broken? It’s heart wrenching. Because you remember how vulnerable you were as a teenager. Reading about characters who freely fall in love and jump into new things, even when they are sure to end badly, reminds you of that part of yourself. Sometimes you need to remember that you haven’t always been cynical and stressed and worried about life.
Because there is a part of your heart that will always be young.
A part of you will always long to fall in love, will always long to be irresponsibly adventurous, will always long to be vulnerable and open to life. And most YA novels are about all of those things. They’re about being open to life.
Do you read YA lit? Why or why not?
PS: Have a Nook? My book is available for pre-order on the Nook today!
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