Keeping Young Adult fiction clean, but exciting
Writing YA fiction can be a tricky business. First off, the most exciting characters (if we’re to be real) are the ones that curse like sailors that have a trail of dead bodies, broken hearts, and crappy grades behind them. Are they the best examples for young minds? Um, no, but they are real. And who the heck wants to read perfection anyway? First off, it doesn’t exist, and secondly, it’s hard to relate to perfection. So the trick is, How do you write something that people want to read that doesn’t make mom and dad flip out when they buy it for you? A second thing to consider when writing YA fiction is, How can I pen a book that will appeal to all age groups, ergo, growing my audience?
When I started writing the Darcy Walker Series, I had absolutely zero idea that my books would be published, let alone be a bestseller in its categories. I wrote for me; it was cathartic; and I didn’t have a bloody clue how to get published anyway. That being said, when I wrote, I wrote with abandon. I didn’t try to appeal to a certain crowd. I just wrote about what I knew (insert the “real” comment of earlier). I like people with baggage—so much baggage an elephant could sit on it and still wouldn’t be able to snap that sucker shut. But, I have two daughters—two daughters that I drill into their heads what it means to be a good kid, with good morals, and high standards. I made the conscious decision to not let the profanity fly on every page in my books and coined what I call Darcyspeak. Darcy might have a lot of other quote/unquote sin and mischievous behavior in her life, but her motives are always pure. So hopefully, Mom and Dad, if you are reading this, the Darcy Walker Series will make your kid a go-getter. Someone who doesn’t give up until they make the things that are wrong in the world…right.
The overall theme in the Darcy Walker books is to embrace who you are, own your flaws, and never, ever give up. Life is hard; being a teenager is even harder. And I’ve always cringed when authorities try to put someone’s square-peg mind, through society’s round hole anyway. Be an individualist. And when you can pen a character that lives with abandon, I think that is what helps your series span the age gaps.
This Laugh out Loud whodunnit will keep you reading all night! Darcy Walker is funny and full of wit and she doesn't let anyone push her around. She will have you laughing so hard you cry. Her Darcyisms are fantastic and they will have you rolling as she says them without thinking and at just the perfect time. I love how A.J. drew you into the story and made you want to stay till the end. What a great summer read to take your mind of things life has to throw at you!