I have a great guest post and giveaway today for all you budding YA novelists out there! Author Victoria Hanley has stopped by to share her top five tips for YA novelists, and thanks to Prufrock Press three lucky readers could win a copy of Victoria's book Wild Ink : Success Secrets to Writing and Publishing in the Young Adult Market. This book has been tagged by Cynthia Hand as one of her writer-must-haves on twitter, and having read an extract, I can see why! This book is chock full of useful tips for budding writers!
Wild Ink: Success Secrets to Writing and Publishing in the Young Adult Market by Victoria Hanley
Publisher: Prufrock Press
Release date: May 1st 2012
What do you need to know to break in to the flourishing young adult (YA) market? With humor and a solid grounding in reality, author Victoria Hanley helps readers understand the ins and outs of the YA genre, how to stay inspired, and how to avoid common mistakes writers make in trying to reach teens. This book includes unique writing exercises to help readers find their own authentic teen voice and dozens of interviews with YA authors, blogging experts, editors, and agents to give inspiration and guidance for getting published. Chapters include writing exercises and self-editing techniques tailored to YA, along with encouraging words on dealing with self-doubt, rejection, and lack of time.
Top 5 Tips for Young Adult Novelists --Victoria Hanley
1. Find your voice. Editors and agents are always looking for fresh voices. How do you find yours? This may sound counter-intuitive, but I recommend working with a shredder. Really. Start with a blank page and then write whatever you want to say. Feed what you’ve written to the shredder before anyone (including you!) reads it. By spending a few minutes a day on this activity, you’ll be giving your creative mind permission to run free--free of pressure, obligation, and fear. Soon, you may surprise yourself with a new level of flow in your writing. A style that’s all yours may emerge.
2. Give in to passion. Teens are full of honesty and raw emotion. Make a point of remembering what it was like for you during the teens years, so your characters will have believable feelings. Write about convincing heartache, true rebellion, wild exploration.
3. Be mean to your characters. Whatever you do when writing YA, do not hold back on the conflict! Resist the urge to take care of your characters and give them easy lives. They need to be under plenty of pressure, pressure that keeps increasing until the climax. (And don’t allow the adults to resolve things.)
4. Get through that sucky first draft. It’s normal for a first draft to be a jumbled mess in serious need of revision. When you hit the wall (and you will), don’t get discouraged. Take a class; join a good critique group; get 'er done! Once you finish a first draft, you’ve got something to polish.
5. Study and read. Learn about industry standards, including submission guidelines and correct manuscript format. Find out how to write a synopsis and a query letter. And read everything you can get your hands on in the YA genre.
Read an extract of Wild Ink: here.
Number of copies to be won: Three.
Competition is open: Internationally -- many thanks to Prufrock Press.
Competition closes: May 31st 2012.
Following this blog is not required to enter the competition, but is always appreciated.
To win a copy of Wild Ink just fill in the form below!
COMPETITION CLOSED! WINNERS ANNOUNCED SOON!