It’s Teen Lit Day!! Didn’t know this? Well it is! It’s probably one of the single coolest and most important days for bloggers, advocates, and of course, young adult readers like me! So in honor of Teen Lit Day I’m going to say my little shpeel on why I love YA and just a couple of other things.
I’ve been reading since I was a baby, and my parents have always placed more and more books into my hands as a growing child and then when I got older, and could manage my own money, I bought my own books. All through elementary, middle, and high school I was/am that girl with a book in her hand or her nose in a book. My family always tells me I miss out on important topics because I’m always lost in a book and I’ve escaped from their reality.
As a little girl I devoured books like chocolate. Every week we went to the library to pick up more and more picture books and then I was able to move onto the independent readers and soon after that it was books like the Little House on the Prairie series, the Box Car Children and others, that started me on reading longer and longer books. I was also, the kid that could always read the fastest and I was way ahead of my peers with my reading level. In 3rd grade I remember having a 6th grade reading level. I think when I was younger that is the memory that sticks out the most: reading, going to the library, and getting books for holdiays and birthdays.
Once I hit middle school, on came the required reading, which, of course, I didn’t mind at all, but there was less time for reading. Also, I remember my reading material becoming a lot darker due to more adult subjects, so I read books that were slightly below my reading level so I could hang onto my childhood days. There was also less time for reading and I always enjoyed winter, spring, and summer breaks where I could spend weeks on end devouring one book after another. Middle school I also accomplished great reading feats such as reading my first Jane Austen book, Pride and Prejudice. Even today it is still one of my all-time favorite books. I also read Gone With the Wind in 8th grade, also another extreme favorite, and still is the longest book I’ve ever read (at 1,024 pages!!).
Now, in high school there’s even more required reading, which I don’t see as a burden like my fellow friends and peers do. I see it as an opportunity to broaden my realm of reading and branch out to other genres that I’ve never been exposed to before (Plus it always makes me feel a lot more intellectual to say that I’ve read Oedipus Rex or To Kill a Mockingbird and actually liked it).
As I progressed through high school and started to take note of what I wanted to do for college and what career I wanted to take, I realized a career with books would be an absolute, perfect dream. Then I realized, I couldn’t write. I had the imagination for it, but just not the will power or want. No, I wanted to do something else, I wanted to read and EDIT. And I wanted to edit only young adult books to help increase teen literacy and help the YA market grow. I honestly believe a lot more teenagers could and should be reading but they’re not because there just aren’t that many YA books to choose from! I want to make a difference, even if it’s a small one, for the Young Adult community.
Reading has affected every single part of my life and it has totally defined who I am and what I want to become (of course this would never have happened if it weren’t for my parents who bought me books instead of toys, so thanks Mom and Dad!).
So, if you can even get one person or child to read it could make a huge difference! And adults too! Adults! Read, read, read! And tell your children to read!! It makes them a better learner, gives them a bigger vocabulary, and generally makes them more interested than, say, a bad habit they could pick up later on! (For me, my bad habit is reading when I should be doing my homework and I’d take that over something else any day!)
Happy Teen Lit Day to you all and I hope you enjoyed a little more background on me!
See you soon!