This past weekend, I went to the Decatur Book Festival in Decatur, Georgia and met several celebrities of my favorite authors.
I attended several panels over Saturday and Sunday. Since finding out about the festival, I’d been looking forward to the “Map of My Heart: Love Stories” panel featuring Isabel Gillies, Stephanie Perkins, Adi Alsaid, and Jennifer E. Smith. They didn’t end up talking too much about travel or the places in their books, but they did get asked probably my favorite question and answer of the festival:
“Elizabeth Lenhard, moderator: Are you thinking about your teen readers? Or are you thinking of everyone? Or are you thinking of these adult readers out there, and does that affect how you’re writing at all?
Adi Alsaid: [after some other stuff] I never heard of people asking young adults why they would read an adult book when the character’s not a young adult. I don’t think that really matters, as a reader. I think we just want to connect with a story and a character, and it almost always is someone unlike ourselves, so why would the age matter?”
As an adult reader of a lot of young adult literature, I really loved this answer. I felt like a lot of my followers would relate to it just as much as I did so I wanted to share. I loved what he said: young adults aren’t asked why they read adult fiction; why should adults be asked why they read young adult fiction? We just want a good story to connect to.