Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Where are the books for my age group?

When I was in high school there wasn't much for the YA genre. I think the only young adult book in my school library was Sloppy Firsts and that technically wasn't even considered YA. So, I spent most of my young adulthood reading VC Andrews and learning the real meaning of flowers in the attic.

Fast forward to college. I didn't have time to read much more than a college textbook, but my roommate was OBSESSED with the Twilight books. I didn't want to read them. They couldn't be like my favorite Anne Rice novels, could they?

They weren't. BUT there was something about the young adult writing style that drew me to it. I always thought I COULD be a writer, but just figured I could be the next AC360 instead.

Fast forward again and I'm a college graduate, working part-time and studying for some insurance exams. I wanted a story for something in MY age group, the college kids. I thought about my own college experience and wanted to write a book about a girl that fails out of her freshman year of college and is forced to move with her great aunt in the rural south.

I wrote it in a few months, edited, used critique partners, and then I learned about the path to publication. What did people mean when they said there wasn't a genre for this age between young adult books and adult books?

I queried anyway. Some agents wanted it, some didn't. I did end up finding an agent. I thought she was my golden ticket! I even found out a publishing house had branded this genre 'New Adult' and had a special section for these characters in the phase between young adult and adult.

I brought this up to the agent. Her response? "Yeah, that's one publishing house. It doesn't mean that it's going to create a new genre in the book store." So I re-edited it, again, this time to make it more of a women's fiction piece. It didn't work as women's fiction. It didn't work as a story with a sixteen-year-old girl getting it on with her southern boyfriend. It was time to shelf it and time for my agent to shelf me.

I worked on How to Date an Alien and eventually indie published it, but the voice of my New Adult characters still lingered in my head. As I got deeper into the indie world I realized that New Adult and Upper YA was alive and well. There were best sellers like Abbi Glines and Jessica Park who were flying up the charts with their college-aged characters. I knew at that point that my former agent wasn't completely right about New Adult. Sure you can't go into a book store and find it, but if you check the Amazon best seller charts, you will see that New Adult is alive and well.

I hope you all had a chance to join our #indiechat on Twitter the other night and got some awesome information about the New Adult genre. If you didn't, our transcripts are always available!

My Paper HeartThere are worse things in life than failing out of college- such as having your parents receive the letter that you’ve been kicked out.
Now to appease her parents self-proclaimed sorority princess Libby Gentry is packing up her Prada bag and heading to work for her great aunt’s antique store in tiny Elsbury, Louisiana. She’s pretty sure she can tackle the swamp and deal with her great aunt and tom boy of a little cousin, but what she doesn’t know is if she can handle the local town playboy, Blaine Crabtree.

As Libby's feelings for Blaine grow, so does her need for acceptance and all of the insecurities she has kept inside are coming out. She may have survived the Louisiana swamp, but she may not survive Blaine's reluctance to say the 'L' word. When Blaine finally commits to the three words Libby’s been waiting for, she only hopes they haven’t come too late.

Available for your Ereader on August 6th, but add it to your GoodReads now!


Magan Vernon is a self-proclaimed geek-to-glam poster child and the Amazon best-selling author of the My Alien Romance series. The first book, How to Date an Alien is currently FREE for Kindle and Nook and just about anywhere else that sells ebooks.

My Paper Heart is her upcoming New Adult novel that was a labor of love and almost four years in the making.


  1. Hopefully this question "Where are the books for my age group?" will be gone very soon and we'll see tons of New Adult books out there.
    I'm sure with everyone spreading the word and writers publishing books in the New Adult category, it'll soar!
    I'm glad I met you during #indiechat the other day ;)
    Yay for New Adult!

    1. Thanks for the comment, Juliana!

      It's nice to have a group like NA Alley that supports all the New Adult authors!

  2. I hadn't hear of the NA category...but I'm glad to see it's out there!

    I also wanted to let all of the Indelibles know that I nominated this blog for The Versatile Blogger Award. :) You can find out more here:

  3. I personally love the New Adult category and want to see more of it. SO sorry I missed the chat! My Paper Heart sounds fantastic! I can hardly wait to read it.