In Which Our Heroine Discusses YA Couples

I got some great responses when I decided to write about love triangles in Y fiction and my thoughts on them. Conversations were started which I found to be a lot of fun, so I’d like to throw another related topic out there.

The YA couple. Since I write YA, that’s what I’m going to stick with for purposes of this post. Any story that hits romance as a genre needs to have its own power couple. Some writers like the Destined One, others like the Love Triangle, others like the Not-Destiny-But-Obvious-Couple.

No matter which type is chosen, the next big question can be how physical is such a relationship going to get in a YA novel. It’s a big question that can often decide if libraries and schools will take your books, if organizations want it banned and for some teens, whether or not a book is “too sexy” for them. You will find books that go from very clean, to books that deal with teen sexuality a lot more. The bottom line I think that writers need to remember is that they send a message on their pick, no matter what that message is. I’m a cleaner read author but I know of other writers that hit varying degrees of clean or racier. I don’t think the other writers are wrong for writing what they do. Some of them explore issues of sexuality that are important to teens and it is important for them to write a story that does that.

For me, a person who works with teens, I see too many girls get hung up on the wrong person because they have convinced themselves that this person is the One. They get caught up with wanting this person to be the One so badly that they don’t see why that can’t happen and it creates a vicious cycle of drama that impacts everything. I’m big of the idea of a partnership in my stories, of a couple complimenting each other and bringing out the best in each other. I think those are important qualities in a relationship and I want teen girls to have that example. When they say they want a guy like my romantic hero, I want it to be because he has qualities that should be reasonable to expect in a partner, I want my heroes to raise the standard girls have for boyfriends.