Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Road Trip Wednesday

Before I begin with YA Highway's Road Trip Wednesday question, I would like to address something first.  There is a bit of a stigma that goes along with both reading and writing the young adult genre that I would hereby like to banish from this blog.  Just because it is titled "Young Adult" does not mean you have to be a young adult to enjoy it.  There are some wonderful books out there that I, myself, have enjoyed and been laughed at or whispered about because of said enjoyment.  Guess what?

I don't care.

You can call me childish.  You can call me silly.  You can call me whatever you want.  I like some young adult books.  And I have entertained the idea of writing a young adult novel as well.  I think it's high time some of the literary snobs stopped turning up their nose every time a serious writer mentions they are writing a young adult piece.  It may not be as profound as your literary novel, but it means just as much to just as many people, whether they are teenagers or grown-ups with big imaginations.

There, now that's out of the way.

YA Highway's Road Trip Wednesday

I have been a follower of the YA Highway for a while now and decided I would start participating in their Road Trip Wednesday "Blog Carnival".  They post a question and invite followers to answer on their own blogs.  If you visit their site, you can click on the different links in the comments and read everyone's replies.  The question for this week is:

What novellas would you like to see inspire YA books?

The first novella that came to mind is George Orwell's Animal Farm.  I remember reading it in junior high school and thinking wow, this guy had a serious issue with Russian dictators.  Or maybe just an insider's knowledge of the hierarchy on a farm.  Anyway, it wasn't until much later that I developed an appreciation for the message within the story.  If the story didn't leave as much of an impression on you, let me refresh your memory.  

On the dystopian Manor Farm, the animals, lead by some radical pigs, revolt against the tyrannical Mr. Jones.  They establish their own set of rules called Animalism (a.k.a. Communism) and unite themselves against the humans.  But that sneaky pig, Napoleon, takes certain liberties with the rules and leads the animals back into oppression with his "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others" law.

I think these timeless concepts of equality, false allegiance, and political corruption would make a kick-ass YA novel today.  There are literally millions of instances where young people come in contact with the ideas of oppression, virtue, and rebellion.  I would love to see that message captured into a sort of YA cautionary tale.  I can see a Snowball-type character, the unsung hero, defeating the evil and power-hungry Napoleon character.  Maybe it could be adapted to the hierarchy of high school?  I think we're on to something here...

Thanks for reading and remember, "Four legs good, two legs bad"!  Just kidding.  Enjoy your Wednesday.