I mentioned the other day how I might focus on my YA and MG projects for the time being. I've tried that, along with reading more in those genres, and I think I've learned something. I like reading YA and MG more than I like writing them. I have the one MG series I love (though I continually worry that it's too much like Harry Potter). But nearly every idea I come up with seems kind of flat.
My biggest issue is that I feel limited with these books. In MG and YA, you are restricted to the point of view of kids and teens. I enjoy writing younger characters, but I also enjoy giving older characters their time. Then, of course, there's the romance that seems so obligatory in YA, or some of the growing up stuff in MG. I don't mind these themes, especially in my reading, but it feels like I'm being constrained when I have to write with these audience expectations in mind.
I think I end up liking so many MG and YA stories not because they are MG and YA, but because they're fantasy or science fiction. So maybe I'm not a YA writer. The older I get, the less the YA themes of these books appeal to me. With a lot of my ideas, I have the feeling I would have loved them if I'd come up with them even a few years ago. Now, I'm not so sure.
Of course, this could all change. With the ups and downs of my moods, trying to find direction in life is a very difficult thing.
I still think I'd like to branch out from the epic fantasies I've been writing. I feel like there's a lot more out there. Thankfully, my current to-read pile has a wide variety of books in it. Maybe I'll get some ideas.