Why You Should Be Following Teens in the YA Community (+List of Teens You Should Be Following)

Recently, there’s been talk about teens in the online YA community and their safety. Even in a community based on books geared towards teenagers, teens are still feeling unwelcomed. Taryn from novelparadise recently held a poll on Twitter asking the age of members of the YA Twitter community. The results are, well, a bit surprising.

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Note: The screenshot of the poll is with six hour and fifty-seven minutes left. Results may be slightly different by the end of it.

As you can see, 67% of 1,137 votes are over 20. Now, I know that many of the 20+ were teens when they started being involved with the community. I feel like the community needs to open up and be more welcoming to the new teens. It’s especially important for writers to listen and learn from teens. After all, they are writing books that are targeted for us.

If you are 20+ and you love YA, that is AWESOME. Young Adult is a diverse, growing genre that can be enjoyed by any age. However, don’t forget who YA is made for. It is made for teens. For that reason, it is important to listen to us when we talk about Young Adult.

Do you think you don’t follow enough teens (13-19)? Want *a few* recommendations?

My hand’s hurting from so much copying and pasting! Thank you to everyone who submitted their link! Are you a teen and want to be included in this list? Send me a DM on Twitter or leave your link in the comments!

Why do you think it’s important to follow teens in the YA community? Have you checked out any of the blogs listed yet? Do you have any new favorites?

-Liv

I Will Not Be Watching 13 Reasons Why and Here’s Why…{Discussion Post}

Trigger Warning: In the post, there is talk about self harm, suicide, and rape. Please use precaution before continuing.

Right now, it seems like I can’t go ten minutes without seeing something about 13 Reasons Why. Even boys in my journalism class were raving about it. However, I felt quite uneasy about the show from the beginning. The day after it was released, I saw a post on Twitter with all the triggers for each episode.

*These Pictures Are Not My Own I Just Had Them Saved to My Laptop, and I Can’t Find The Original Tweet*. 

I read 13 Reasons Why when I was in eighth grade. I must admit that I understand a good amount of the book. Looking back, though, I’m starting to realize how much I either lost from my memory over time or what went right over my head. Regardless, I was still really impacted by the novel. For this reason, I was quite excited about the adaption to a Netflix series.

Now that you know my history with the book, I’d like to take a minute to examine some information about suicide and entertainment.

  • “Prominent placement and undue repetition of stories about suicide are more likely to lead to imitative behaviors than more subtle presentations.”
  • “Detailed discussion of the method used in a given completed or attempted suicide should be avoided, because a step-by-step description may prompt vulnerable people to copy the act. For example, in reporting an overdose, it would be unwise to detail the nature, quantity, or combination of drugs taken, or how they were procured.”

Yes, 13 Reasons Why is an important story. Suicide is a topic that needs to be talked about; we need to be able to have discussions about it and give people the help they need. Suicide is one of the top five causes of death for teens between the ages of 15-19. It needs to be discussed.

However, having a T.V. show where graphic scenes are showed on screen can be incredibly harmful. They can trigger people who have had past experiences with self-harm and suicide. They can encourage people who struggle with it to continue with their harmful habits.

“BUT,” they say. “IT’S MADE SO MANY PEOPLE AWARE OF THEIR ACTIONS AND ALERTED PEOPLE TO SUICIDE AWARENESS!!!”

Not to play devil’s advocate, but it is true that shows that have themes of suicide and mental health can cause people to become more aware of it in their daily lives. However, I’ve noticed that this awareness is short-lived. It will last for a little bit, but it won’t has a lasting impact like we wish it would. Eventually, people will forget. New forms of entertainment will be the latest trend, and 13 Reasons Why will be left in the dust along with its intended message.

One argument in favor of the graphic nature of the show is this: in the beginning of the very graphic episodes, there are disclaimers. Here’s the thing: whether or not you put disclaimers at the beginning of the episodes doesn’t really make up for the fact that you are unknowingly helping people do the very thing you’re trying to raise awareness for. Not to mention, numerous psychologists repeat that showing a step-by-step process to self harm or suicide will do more harm than good.

A few days ago, my best friend’s boyfriend remarked: “I just feel like they treat Hannah [the main character] like she’s a college student. She’s a sophomore. Stuff like that doesn’t happen to sophomores.” Newsflash: Things like that do happen to people even younger than sophomores. Rape can happen to anyone. No matter how old they are. Self harm and suicide can affect anyone no matter their age. The themes of 13 Reasons Why are definitely not for the faint hearted. However, the story does need to be told. I do not believe that the adaption of 13 Reasons Why gives the subject matters justice. For that reason, I will not be watching 13 Reasons Why. If you choose to watch it, please take caution before doing so.

 

If you or anyone you know is affected by suicide or suicidal thoughts, please reach out. Here are hotlines and websites you can reach out to:

  • https://www.7cups.com/
  • National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
  • Crisis Text Line: Text “Start” to 741-741
  • Trevor Lifeline: 866-488-7386.

 

Sources

 

Leave your opinions/comments about 13 Reasons Why in the comments!
-Liv

Books I Plan on Reading Over Spring Break

Hello everyone! In December, I wrote a post about the books I was planning on reading over winter break. My TBR for Spring Break is rather ambitious, so I thought it would be fun to make a post about the books I was planning on reading. I’ll have two airplane trips, so I’m hoping I’ll get a lot read.

1. The Ship Beyond Time by Heidi Heilig

30653880I read The Girl From Everywhere, and I really enjoyed it! I met Heidi at the North Texas Teen Book Festival and purchased The Ship Beyond Time there. I am eager to continue the series and see where the book goes from where it left off.

2. The Sandcastle Empire by Kayla Olson

I met Kayla through a Twitter chat; I mainly connected with her because we both had curly hair. I finally met Kayla in real life at NTTBF. She had a giveaway for whoever found her first at NTTBF, and I won! The Sandcastle Empire is one of my most anticipated releases, and I am so happy to have a physical arc.

3. Stuff I’ve Been Feeling Lately by Alicia Cook

Since reading The Princess Saves Herself in This OneI’ve really been wanting to read more poetry in my life. I also read Milk and Honey but didn’t love that one as much. I saw Stuff I’ve Been Feeling Lately on Goodreads and thought I’d give it a try!

4. I Believe In A Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo31145133

When I attended NTTBF, I also attended a breakfast hosted by Fierce Reads. At our table, we sat with the authors; Maurene Goo was one of the authors there. There were ARCs of I Believe In A Thing Called Love, so I was able to take one. After hearing Maurene speak about it, I’m really excited to read it.

5. Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy

Like many of the books on this list, I received this book book from an Epic Reads book event at NTTBF. To be honest, I completely forgot that this book was being released in 2017! I loved Dumplin‘, and I’m really excited to see how I like this one!

What books are you planning on reading during spring break?-Liv

Authors I’m Excited to Meet at NTTBF

It’s almost time for one of my favorite events: NTTBF. NTTBF is the North Texas Teen Book Festival in Irving, TX. It’s a completely free book festival; I am attending this year! If you’re going and you see me, please say hello! I love interacting with fellow booklovers. They have over eighty authors this year; In today’s post, I’m going to be talking about some of the authors I’m excited to meet.

1. Adam Silvera

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you may remember that I have already met Adam last year at NTTBF16. He was one of the sweetest human beings on this planet. I’m hoping to be able to meet him again this year to have him sign my copy of History is All You Left Me.

2. Jennifer Niven

At this point, All The Bright Places is a staple YA book that is fairly common. I loved her second book, Holding Up The Universe, just as much as I loved her first one. I’ve been waiting for years for her to do an event near me, and she is finally going to be near me!

3. Ally Carter

I met Ally last year because she’s my best friend’s favorite author, so I could get her a signed copy. Now that I’ve read most of her Gallagher Girls series, I want to meet her again to have my copies signed.

4. Heidi Helig

For the longest time, I always saw Heidi’s tweets on my timeline because my friends would retweet them. Eventually, I followed her and received her The Girl From Everywhere for Christmas from my brother. I read TGFE and loved it.

5. Nicola Yoon

Nicola Yoon is one of my favorite YA authors ever. I read Everything Everything a few years ago. Even though it has been known to have ableist themes, I can’t deny it doesn’t because I am able-bodied. Despite this, I still liked it. However, I loved Nicola’s The Sun Is Also A Star a lot. Nicola Yoon has done three different book signings in Dallas since I’ve lived here; I’ve missed all three of them. I’m happy to finally be able to meet her.

6. Maggie Stiefvater

Confession: I haven’t any of Maggie’s books. However, (as of 2/27/17) I’m starting The Raven Boys. I’m really enjoying it even though I’m only a few pages in it. I’m hoping to finish The Raven Boys before the festival.

7. Angie Thomas

One of my most anticipated releases for 2017 is The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. I’ve been following this book for several months, and I’m highly anticipating its release. My copy will arrive a few days before the festival, and I’m excited to get me copy signed.

Of course, there are several more authors that I’m hoping to meet. The festival only gives an hour and a half to get books signed. I’m bringing a few extra books for authors to sign just incase I have extra time.

Are you attending the North Texas Teen Book Festival? If you are, what are some authors you want to meet? 

-Liv

Do You Listen to Music While You Read? {Discussion Post}

I have a weird talent: I can read with music (or any noise) in the background. Ever since I could read chapter books by myself, I was able to read no matter what was happening around me. I could be in the middle of a busy classroom and still be able to focus on the pages; I still can today. In fact, I didn’t even know that it was a talent that I was able to do this. I held a poll on Twitter asking you guys if you could read with music in the background. And I was honestly quite shocked at the results.

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Apparently, being able to read while listening to music isn’t as common as I thought it was! I also asked why they could or couldn’t listen to music. These are some of the responses I got:

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The one thing I have a difficulty with is reading while listening to musicals. For some reason, I can’t enjoy a book while enjoying a musical at the same time. I suppose it may have something to do with trying to focus on two conflicting storylines. Despite this, are you like me? Are you able to read and listen to music? Are you able to read while listening to music but you don’t know what to listen to? Would you like some recommendations? Here are some of the few artists and playlists I listen to while I’m reading:

Do you read while listening to music? What are some of your favorite artists/bands/playlists to listen to? 

-Liv