Category Archives: Young Adult

Suddenly, She Knew Her Next Move: When the Young Adult Mystery Makes the Leap

One of the big “issues” in young adult fiction is the level of violence in the books. And that’s “violence” in multiple forms: beatings, abuse, sexual abuse, death by murder or manslaughter, death by suicide. There are long and complex … Continue reading

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Revision IS Writing: And It Makes YA Mysteries Much Better!

At least once a week, a writer will respond to my enthusiastic salute of “Great week for writing, isn’t it?” by saying, “I wish I were! But this week I’m editing” — which to an active writer is shorthand for … Continue reading

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Eat, listen and be happy

Very rarely do two such excellent things come together at the same time as they will Thursday night, when Walker Memorial Library  in Westbrook, Maine, hosts “Cookies & Crime.” Yes, you read that right. Cookies. And Crime. What’s not to like? … Continue reading

Posted in Lea Wait, Libraries, Of Interest, Readers, SinCNE, Upcoming Events, Writers, Young Adult | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

YA Mysteries: Beginning, Middle, END, Part 6

This is the last of my six posts on constructing “young adult” (YA) mysteries — the next set considers revision from a YA writing standpoint. Stay with the Pen, Ink, and Crimes team, as we head toward the peak excitement … Continue reading

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YA Mysteries: Beginning, Middle, END, Part 5

Remember that description of the two kinds of mystery writers — pantsers and plotters? Plotters plot. In detail. With outlines. Chapter summaries. Scenes listed. Sometimes they use software to help keep track of twists, red herrings, and changes in characters … Continue reading

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YA Mysteries: Tangled Threads in the Middle

This diagram is one of the simplest to show how threads can be used to carry the movement of the mystery novel — in this case, from The Technique of the Mystery Story by Carolyn Wells (more here: http://gaslight.mtroyal.ca/ToMX24.htm). Three … Continue reading

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YA Mysteries: Beginning, MIDDLE, End, Part 3

Choosing the target age of a “young adult” (YA) mystery is an adventure in itself. The genre usually markets to readers aged 10 to 15, maybe 17. And, as mentioned by 22-year-old author of YA fiction Shannon A. Thompson (see … Continue reading

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YA Mysteries: Beginning, Middle, End, Part 2

There are plotters and pantsers among mystery writers — plotters being the authors who work out the plot in detail (often using some form of software to keep it all together or, like Jennifer McMahon, colorful “stickies” on a work … Continue reading

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YA Mysteries: Beginning, Middle, End, Part 1

Although the “young adult” (YA) mystery series I’m now writing is set “today” in Vermont’s capital city of Montpelier, I also write YA mysteries set during other time periods. On school visits, I encourage students to try this themselves! History, … Continue reading

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YA Mysteries: Back to Basics

One of my favorite adventures each month is picking out one or two books for an eighth-grade friend of mine. She’s tall, moderately athletic, helps with the family business when she’s not studying, and would rather read a book than … Continue reading

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