OK, I never do this. I never respond to all the critical and media disparagement of genres in which I write. Romance takes it hard - you can almost never read any article about the romance genre without the outdated and ridiculous term "bodice rippers" coming up. It's outright insult at worst and sloppy journalism at best - like putting a discussion of steam engines in an article about modern physics. But I write romance and women's fiction, and I love writing emotionally satisfying stories about love and a woman's journey and all of the terrifically exciting adventures that can go along with those things.
I've also written a couple of young adult books, just for fun, and they were very light-hearted. But I'm now working on a very intense, lovely, dark and deep love story YA novel that has (of course!) a very paranormal vibe to it. So maybe YA is on my mind, and that's why this hit me so hard. But while eating breakfast today I was glancing through this week's Entertainment Weekly and there's a piece about their predictions for the Oscar noms. Under Best Adapted Screenplay, they have a "For Your Consideration" box that says this:
Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist writer Lorene Scarfaria fashioned rounded characters from a young adult novel.
And, you know, this really ticked me off. The implication is glaringly obvious: the screenwriter MUST deserve an Oscar for MANAGING to turn characters from a YOUNG ADULT NOVEL into "rounded characters." WTF??????
Let me tell you, this EW writer hasn't read much in the way of YA novels. I have so many friends writing in the YA field right now, and their books are amazing, thought-provoking, and --surprise! -- their characters are definitely "rounded." Read Caridad Ferrer, or Niki Burnham, or Serena Robar, or Marianne Mancusi, or Simone Elkeles - and her new book, PERFECT CHEMISTRY, is out now and you MUST watch the hilarious rap video parody she did for the book - the music will stick in your mind AND make you want to buy the book AND tell you how to pronounce her last name, LOL.
So, please, media. Get over your outdated prejudices. We romance authors don't write "bodice rippers." We young adult authors DO write wonderfully rich and rounded characters who are experiencing all that life has to offer when you're on that thrilling cusp of adulthood and your future shimmers with endless possibilities.
OK, stepping off soapbox now. It's 2 days till WILD THING's release!! So in the comments tell me your favorite romance or young adult novel you've read recently and I'll randomly select two to win an autographed copy.