I got such great feedback after writing this blog post about real teens in YA novels (before you judge or comment on this statement, please read the entire blog post), and my concerns about older readers/reviewers contributing to the extinction of realistic portrayals of teens in YA.
Because we all need a reality check sometimes, I sought out the assistance of some real live teens to take us 35 year-olds back in time, to help us remember and understand. Beyond that, what you read and what you enjoy is, of course, your choice. Always. But if you feel a story is well suited for the genre, please take a moment to say so in your reviews, regardless of your personal opinions of the book.
Teens who contacted me were given a choice of 14 questions they could answer, all prompting a story or information sharing. Basically a little insight into their minds, their worlds, their lives. I have changed names to keep it safe and secure.
If you are a teen or know a teen who would like to participate, please email me juliecroauthor(at)gmail.com with subject line TEEN AT YOUR SERVICE
Today’s Episode Topic: My Crazy Family
Today, I’m going to let “Cally,” a 17 year old American teenager, tell us about some recent family drama and hardships and the people who are helping her face this.
From such a young age, I was taught that family comes first. That my siblings will always be there for me and support me when no one else would. Or when it felt like my world was falling apart, they would be the ones to piece me back together and patch up any of my holes. But it didn’t start like this at all. When I was little, I was a crazy child. I would bite/hit/scratch my sisters. I would blame them and get them in trouble for every little thing. I’m the youngest so I got away with doing this. When I finally matured, I realized how important my sisters’ opinions of me are. I wanted them to be my best friends like my parents always said we would be. So I started to be nice to them and actually hang out with them.4 years later, at age 17, my sisters and I are best friends. We do mostly everything together and tell each other a lot of things. From personal, to stupid, to anything in between. Jessica, the oldest, is now 22. Miranda, the middle child, is 19. So when the time came for them to move away to college, I was heartbroken. They complete me and make me the person I am today. Especially when life gets tough. Like right now.Recently, my parents told my sisters and I, that they were getting a divorce. This hit us hard. My family did everything together. Of course we want our parents to be happy, and if that meant being apart, then so be it. But that doesn’t stop us from being hurt or upset.After my parents separated this month, and my dad moved into his new apartment, my mom came out and told us that she’s a lesbian and is seeing someone. Then to add the cherry on top, my dad told us he was also seeing a woman from his childhood. Now, my sisters and I are facing the divorce and this new news. As anyone can tell, it was rough and caused a lot of problems, drama, and tears. If I was an only child, I would be depressed and alone. My parents always tell me when I’m upset I can come to them and talk, but it’s different. They’re my parents. But with my sisters, it’s like they understand exactly how I feel even when I don’t say it. So, my parents were right about one thing. Family does come first and my sisters are my best friends.
Feel free to take a moment to offer “Cally” some encouraging words an insight or tells us about your own story. Also, feel free to recommend a YA novel for “Cally” or any others who might appreciate reading about a character going through something similar. STEALING PARKER by Miranda Kenneally came to mind…[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]