I’ve written three books. Three. It’s crazy because I distinctly remember thinking that completing just one book was an impossible feat. It wasn’t. I did a thing a lot of people dream about doing. Three times! (Hooray for recognizing the victories that keep you going when things are hard.)
My third book is a YA suspense. I love YA and honestly it’s what I read the most of. But I was afraid to write it. It took two other books before I felt like I could. If you read my other post, you know that for some reason there is a lot of stigma surrounding YA writers. There are tons of adults who read and love YA, but there are also lots of people who think it’s childish for a grown woman to fangirl over YA books. It can be hard to open yourself up to the judgement of others by doing something you know people will criticize you for. Haters gonna hate though, right? Right.
I also had a friend’s significant other say something along the lines of “Oh, is it YA?” in a very sarcastic voice when I was discussing my second novel (commercial women’s fiction). At the time, I was happy I could say that it wasn’t just out of pure spite. Then I felt gross for feeling happy. The implication that any project is somehow less for being YA is ridiculous. I wish I was braver at the time to say that. I promise to be so in the future.
In fact, I hope I can get my third novel published just so I can go back to that guy and tell him that my project–the one that has brought me so much joy for writing it–is a young adult novel. I know. Again with the spite. (I might also do a happy dance/booty shake in front of him just so he knows where he stands.)
I hope anyone out there who is keeping quiet about a project because they’re afraid of what their casual acquaintances (and it’s ALWAYS them and not the people who know and love you best) might think knows that I was there too. Let them have their hate and petty comments. You get to keep the love you have for your projects, and that’s a much bigger prize.