Guest Blog over at Writing4All…

Having spent 4 of the last 5 weeks teaching smart, brilliant, fabulous teenagers (the other week was spent with smart, brilliant, fabulous kids), and having spent far too long being asked ‘so do you ever want to, you know, write a proper book?’, the topic for a guest blog at Writing4All seemed logical: Writing Imaginary Books for Generic Teenagers

“Teenagers are not a separate species who through some accident of nature all share identical reading habits and critical faculties. And if as a writer you find yourself pondering the fact that some of them do seem to resemble mindless zombies, it’s a good idea to look around the office or the neighbourhood and ponder how well any particular age group looks when its least enchanting specimens are held up for scrutiny.”

About clairehennessy

Writer (mostly YA fiction), creative writing teacher, tea drinker, book junkie. View all posts by clairehennessy

6 responses to “Guest Blog over at Writing4All…

  • Eimear

    Great post! Derek Landy says the same thing in the Sunday Times Culture section today – that people actually say “When are you going to write a proper book?” Appalling really!

    • clairehennessy

      I saw that this morning and was delighted that it’s not just me who gets that kind of craziness from random people who feel perfectly entitled to be the assessors of reality and properness.

  • Laura Cassidy

    loved your guest post Claire!

  • Margaret

    Read your guest blog and totally agree, particularly with the stuff about how teenagers get stereotyped in a way that other age groups usually don’t.

    But I also agree that books for children and teenagers are just as real as any other kind of book. Some of the best books I’ve read have been aimed at children or teens. It also strikes me as kind of rude to tell somebody that something they’ve worked for months or whatever on isn’t “a proper book.”

    • clairehennessy

      Thanks, Margaret!

      A lot of people genuinely do think it’s very easy to write for a younger audience – that it’s about dumbing down and sure they’ll accept anything… when in fact they are pretty darn critical readers. (And yes, quite rude. But people do say it.)

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