Tuesday, 28 July 2015
RNA Conference Day 3
Finally, I have got round to post about the last day of the conference.
The first talk I went to was by Catherine Jones, talking about her life in the army and writing career in the army and onwards. Then was a talk about how to keep readers reading by Emma Darwin. She told us the many ways of writing styles there are, inc one I didn't know about called 'free indirect style'. She gave us exercises to do in the different writing styles. One of these gave me an idea for a teen/YA book.
Then was a talk by Tamsyn Murray about emotion in YA. She explained one three YA books are so successful: 'The Fault in our Stars', Hunger Games and the Year of the Rat. They have these in common: Strong indentifiable and central theme. Memorable characters, quality writing, fantastic storytelling, brilliant world building, love, romance, crossover appeal, word of mouth success, PR commitment from publisher and luck. You have to know your reader. Research what's out there. Remember how intense your teen years were. Understand that readers form strong bonds with characters they like - make them relatable and make them care. Let them experience loss in a safe way. How? ID your theme early. Know what your book wants to say. Create loveable characters. Do something different. Don't be afraid to write strong emotions. Deepen the conflict there is already not add more. In teen books, more action has to happen more often. MG is best for engagement.
So there you have what I learnt and come away with. I hope you have learnt something, too.