Tell Me Something #26
|June 19, 2012||Posted by Cambria under Tell me something Tuesday|
Welcome to my weekly meme Tell Me Something Tuesday where I ask you something and you tell me the answer!! It’s as simple as that and I thought it would be a great way for all of us bloggers to get to know one another! So this is how it works: I post a question here on my blog and then i give my answer. I invite all the bloggers to take the question and post it on their blog with their answer and we can hop around and see what everyone says! If you are a blogger don’t forget to leave your link at the bottom of this post! If you aren’t a blogger – that’s okay too!! Leave your answer in the comments section!
Tell Me Something:
Do you think YA books should have ratings?
This is a tough question for me because I write YA. I am really more interested in your answers than my own but I do have an opinon or two on this topic. LOL. Keep in mind that I am a little biased I guess you could say because this is what I write. 🙂 Feel free to tell me I am wrong. Just say it nicely. LOL.
My first thoughts on this is No, YA books shouldn’t need a rating because they are YA! Because authors of YA should take into account who they are wiritng for. But it isn’t that cut and dry. There is A LOT of gray area in the world of writing for young adults. I think that things aren’t so cut and dry for a few reasons. One being that the YA age range is pretty big. From what I hear and know the YA age range is 13-18 + . There is a BIG age and maturity gap between a 13 and 18 year old. What is just fine for a 16 or 18 year old I (personally) probably don’t want my 13 year old reading.
Now I will say I do not have a child in the YA range. I do have a 9 year old though, so this will be coming my way. But right now I can’t imagine allowing my 13 year old to read some of the YA I have read. Course, I don’t know what the difference is between a 9 year old and a 13 year old yet. LOL.
Another point (or opinion) I would like to bring up is something that I have encountered and considered when writing my own series. That point is believablility…. I honestly think that teenagers deal with a lot of issues like sex, alochol, drug use, etc… but it seems that writing about those things is hard… it’s considered edgy or dark. But when I was writing Masquerade and was developing Heven and Sam’s relationship I really thought about if I should/should not bring up sex. I was like, well will people think its inappropriate? Will I give the wrong idea. Because here’s the thing I faced as a writer of YA. What I write could potentially influence a teenager. That’s dicey to me… I don’t want to come off like sex is no big deal and they should do it. But I also don’t want to not mention it at all because they all face whether to do it or not. Do you see what I mean? So I chose to do it this way… they talked about it. Sure in Sam’s POV he said he wanted to do it… i think most guys think that. But he also recognized the fact that they weren’t ready for it until they got to know each other. Heven agreed and they didn’t do it. But that didn’t make them saints either bc I recall a few steamy scenes between them. There again, i wondered what people would think, but in the end I felt it was true to my characters and story to be realistic with them… people who are that in love with each other wouldn’t keep their hands to themselves. They just wouldn’t. LOL. BUt then again, when people email me and say “Hey I have a 12 or 13 year old, can they read this?” I don’t know what to say. I know some 13 year olds have read this. My personal opinion and what I tell people that ask me that is this: “I probably wouldn’t let my 13 year old read it. But that’s me. Read it first and decide if you think its appropriate.” A 15 year old? Yup. Go ahead.
I tried to keep Masquerade clean. I knew I was writing YA and I tried to keep things so where they were realistic but not over the top. I still get reviews that say its only appropriate for older YA. I get reviews that say it has too much drinking and too much sex. (no one has sex in Masquerade and there is a party with some drinking but both Heven and Sam obstain from the alochol). BUt I also felt like teens go to parties with drinking. They are faced with that. Would it even be plausible for Heven and Sam to go to a huge party at the lake and for there not to be some form of alocohol floating around? Do I fault those reviewers? No. It’s their opinion. And I guess I just said i would recommend it for a 15 year old and up.
Maybe rating YA books isn’t a bad idea. It might keep parents from wondering what their kids are reading. Then again, I see movies rated PG 13 and I think “No way in Hell my 13 year old is watching this” so I think it goes back to who is rating the books in the first place. What one person says is appropriate for a 13 year old is different than what someone else might think.
Really I think, when in doubt I think parents should read it first then decide. Unless you can tell for sure what they are getting. It shouldn’t be that way… but it kind of is.
Unless… maybe the age range of the genre were changed. YA should maybe be 15 and up. or 16 and Up. If parents of younger teens want their child to read the YA then they would know what they were in for.
I also think that writers of YA are in a tough position because if what I mentioned before. They have to be careful what kind of message they are sending yet they want to be real. And also keep in mind that over half the YA readers I know are adults. Course, I think an adult would understand they were reading a YA book and if they wanted more “steam” they could pick up an adult book.\
I have read a few YA books that I am blown away by because of the things that happen that I think are not age appropriate. Maybe it all comes down to how things are written. The detail and how much emphasis is on a certain thing…. you know? I mean I can write about sex but not be explicit. I can write about drugs without giving instructions on how to roll a joint… (i don’t know how to do that by the way, i don’t do drugs, LOL).
I’m kind of on the fence here and would love to hear YOUR opinions. As a writer I try to take into account who I am writing for but also I want to be realistic. Will Sam and Heven ever have sex…. guess we will wait and see… and it will be interesting to read the reviews if/when they do.
Okay, I hope I didn’t bore you with my tangent and some of it made sense. LOL.
Now its your turn to tell me what you think!
Before you go here is next week’s TMST question:
Do you buy books based on the book cover?