A late recap of a WFC panel: "Curse Words & Other Ways To Tell It Isn't A Children's Fantasy." Laurel Winter, Moderator. Panelists: Ellen Klages, Patricia McKillip, Garth Nix, Sharyn November.
SN: I have no problem with curse words. I am more likely to put curse
words in your book. (SN is an editor.)
General agreement among the panelists that 'bad' words are fine in YA.
SN: Major prohibition in YA is explicit sex. Can have sex, just not explicit sex.
GN: YA is a subset of adult literature not a subset of children's literature.
SN: In a children's book the cast drinks Coke, in a YA book they snort coke.
SN: Invented curse words sound phony. [Me: Thank you, thank you. I often see it recommended that writers invent curse words of the future. I have always found the results unconvincing, unsatisfying, and usually ludicrous, breaking the suspension of disbelief. Poul Anderson's "Let's haul mass outta here!" Larry Niven's "Tanj it!" Even Norman Mailer's 'fug'.]
EK: Character must swear for a reason. Kids swear for a specific reason, unlike adults. [Family anecdote: older brother, home on leave from army, circa 1956, to grandmother at the dinner table: "Please pass the fuckin' butter." Grandma went to her room and didn't come out for days.]
SN: The kind of edginess that's acceptable has changed since the 1970's. Hates the book Rainbow Party. She's had better experiences with genre writers who write non-genre YA than with non-genre writers who try to write genre: the latter come up with a lot of shopworn material (e.g., finding dragon eggs).
GN: Half of all YA sales are to adults.
SN: Teens read across age lines. Books are published in different lines for different audiences. Example: three different versions of His Dark Materials aimed at different demographics. What is YA and what is 'adult' is often quite fuzzy.
EK: Children's literature may have more staying power than adult literature. A survey in the early 1950's picked the 100 favorite children's books of that time. Most are still in print, and half are fantasy.
SN: The literary intelligentsia don't read YA/children's books until they have kids, and then they are surprised how good they are. Authors who write YA are sometimes asked when they will will start writing 'real' novels. "Does anyone ask a pediatrician when they will start treating 'real' patients?"
EK: You can kill a dog in fiction, but if you kill a cat, your readers will hate you. You can kill a promising series of novels by killing a cat in one: readers will never buy another book in that series.
GN: threatened to test this idea.
I did go to other panels at WFC, and although most were interesting, none had
a great deal of take-home material.
主催 == shusai
== (noun which can take する to act as a verb) organization,
|Etymology obscure. Left radical is 'person' (人). Right radical is a character only found in Chinese meaning 'high mountain'. Its radicals are 'mountain' (山), and the radical form of 'bird'. How this character arrived at its current meaning is unclear. Henshall suggests as a mnemonic: 'Person musters and organizes birds on mountain.'|