Love this list of stuff to stop doing in YA novels. A few favorites:
“4. No more main characters who want to be writers.”
Because then you quote something your main character has written and it’s supposed to be amazing, and I put on my judgment cap.
“5. No more evil cheerleaders, even if it IS true to life. May still work if they’re zombies or something, though. I HAVE always wanted to do a book called “Pushing Cheerleaders Down the Stairs.””
Evil non-zombie cheerleaders are so 1994, guys. There are lots of evil people in high school. Let’s give them their chance to shine! Or something.
“9. No more dystopias without flying motorcycles. Because flying motorcycles are awesome and I don’t want there to be a future that doesn’t have them. Really, any dystopia set in a world that doesn’t look like a Meat Loaf video is just not okay with me.”
If Sirius Black can have a flying motorcycle, we should all have flying motorcycles. Work on it, scientists!
My own additions:
- No more wild and wacky best friends. You want to give your characters fun friends, sure, but they should also feel like real people, not caricatures.
- No more total lack of anything related to school. We don’t need major details on math class, but lots of kids have extracurricular activities they love, midterms they cram for, and rivalries with other schools.
- No more characters not eating. (Okay, novels about people dealing with eating disorders get a pass.) I hate seeing characters sit down for lunch and pick at their food or leave suddenly. People eat every day! Have a sandwich!
Obviously this is just for fun and there’s always a good reason to break rules when writing. Still, I think we’ve got a solid list going here. Anything you’d add?