Young adult authors writing Young adult literature

January 26, 2009 at 9:29 am (General, Teresa D'Amario) (, , , , )

Recently I’ve had the pleasure to work with a young woman who has decided she wishes to become an author.  And not just any author, but a shifter author.  Her choice? Mermaids. 

It’s been a long time since I read a book about mermaids.  I think Shana Abe was the last.  In Shana’s story, the mermaids were born, not made.  In my young friend’s book, her mermaid was made – a curse laid upon her character as a child.  A quite different and original start to her story.

She has a long way to go, my dear online friend, but the fact she has stepped out on the journey of becoming an author is exciting to me.  A young woman just finding herself, and finding what she likes to do.

The interesting and probably most telling thing about this, is my friend hasn’t read Twilight.  She hasn’t seen the movie.  She hasn’t even read my books (I told her she had to wait another year or two to read mine), so what is it about the paranormal which draws her? Her mother tells me she watches the ghost hunter shows on television, but that’s about all.  Why shapeshifters?  Why a character that isn’t human?

Perhaps it’s the same thing which draws all of us to the paranormal – the edge of the unknown, the animalistic qualities which make us wonder what life would be like if…. the typical author concept:  What If?

When first we spoke, this young woman was just starting to create her characters.  She had a young girl in her head, and knew she wasn’t human, but not yet clear on what she was.  We discussed the different options open to her, and how once she really “Knew” her character, her secrets would then be revealed.

And how they were!  I was very surprised when she messaged me the next day and told me she was a mermaid.  What an exciting new way to go!

For me, it’s thrilling to see someone of her age stepping into the world of writing mermaidand creativity. It shows our genre appeals not just to the adult in us, but to our inner child as well.  I remember myself, when I was younger, playing a game similar to dungeons and dragons, and my character was a shifter.  I even considered writing her story.  Imagine where I would be today if I had stepped down that path at that early age.

Imagine where my young friend can be if she continues along this path for the next ten or twenty years.  In this world were reality can truly be painful, she is stepping into a world of her own creation, a world where she can be anything she desires.

Are there any young and budding authors in your life? If so, tell us a little about them.


  1. Beth C. said,

    Not yet. Maybe once the kids get older. Currently one wants to build stuff and the other wants to tear everything down. No one wants to create with words. But they do like reading so I still have hope.

    Wish your friend good luck for us. And remind her she isn’t alone. There are lots of people out here who like the paranormal.

  2. Cathy said,

    My granddaughter just came to me with a 1 page story about a dragon and smore’s. It’s not a shape shifter, but she has been stuck on dragons for 3 years now. She is only 11 and loves to read and write about dragons. I encourage her to write all she wants and buy her any book she wants to read (except adult theme). I don’t know if it will be a career for her, but she has pages and mini books all over the place she has written!

  3. Ilona said,

    My daughter has been a budding author since she was seven and she is still intent on becoming a published author. She writes paranormal, futuristic and contempory romances as well as studying creative writing in Uni 😀 I love the stories she has allowed me to read and hope her dream comes true.

  4. RJ said,

    My daughter is constantly creating and writing her own books about her stuffed animals. She draws all of her pictures as well. In her books, her favorite stuffed animals are all transformed into super good guys always defeating evil. She’s only 8yo now and occasionally has misspelled words either from writing fast or words she hasn’t learned to spell yet. That’s fine with me though since it shows how she continually progresses with each new book.

  5. naima said,

    there really nice and there really good

  6. Rune Tobor said,

    Refer her to fanfiction dot net. But first get her to outline some stories. I like to read books that have strong female characters. So I hope she writes her book.

  7. emily said,

    i dont know if i am going to be a ‘budding author’ or not, but i love to write books. I do it in my free time, and I have become very busy. I am 14 years old. My Grandmother says I am very talented, and that she wants to see what I become when I am older before she dies *rolls eyes*. I am writing my third book, all have been some sort of paranormal. The first one was a 160 page book on A5 size pages on vampires, sort of a twilight one, my second one was completely my own (i hope) and it was around the 160 page mark on A5 pages too, that one was completely magical, the main realm in this was called ‘Eayslie’. My third one is still under construction, i have only just started too. This one is of five girls, who end up being the Protectors. One is the ‘Earth’, one is the ‘Water’, one is the ‘Fire’, one is the ‘Air’, and one is all four.

    I hope to write more books, but i dont know if i want to do it as a job, because i am also a very, very dedicated theatre person.

    lots of love,

  8. SuzAnne said,

    i was just thinking about that the other day. How there should be more mermaid books. I find them fascinating. I always have ever since i was 5… But anyhow please let me know what the book will be called. i would love to read it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Tiffany said,

    I’m so glad to have found this post even though it’s nearly a year old. I’m 19 and I’ve been writing since second grade, maybe longer. My goal is to finish the project that I’m currently working on, submit a few pages of my manuscript to local agencies and try to get representation. I feel that I have something really great on my hands, and I’m just trying to get a feel for what readers are looking for. Not ideas specifically, I have that covered, but I’d like to know if people are even interested in reading mermaid fiction. It seems that everyone these days is either a vampire novelist or trying to write the next Twilight, but I’m not interested in either. I didn’t even want to touch fantasy fiction, but the idea just manifested itself in my writing, so I’ve decided that the best way to counter the obstacle of the supernatural in my own novel is to refrain from creating weak characters. I think Twilight lacks strong characters, and I didn’t realize this until I began working on my manuscript. At any rate, any information about contemporary mermaid fiction will be greatly appreciated. I’d like to know what the competition is writing about. Thanks so much in advance to all who respond.

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