It's a newish genre that is being bantered around lately and stirring a wide range of opinions on the matter.
I did lots of searches this past week on the New Adult genre and came up with quite a few different definitions.
A common perception is:
"New Adult is just YA with sex scenes added in."
If that is the case, it leaves those of us who write fiction from a Christian world view in a bit of a conundrum. Can we adequately write "New Adult" fiction if the key difference is graphic sex scenes that are usually missing from our novels?
My answer: YES YES YES!!!!
OF COURSE we can.
The thing is, I don't agree with the definition of New Adult being "YA + SEX." And many authors who write "new adult" fiction agree that it is an unfair over-generalization.
New Adult is more about creating fiction that addresses the lives/issues/struggles of those who have left teenagerdom behind and entered the world of adulthood--ages 18-26ish. College, first real jobs, first true loves, and yes, even figuring out how sex plays a roll in their adult life.
I have this secret for you...shhhhh... don't tell anyone...
CHRISTIANS HAVE SEX.
(I know... you're shocked... You TOTALLY thought the whole stork thing, didn't you...)
And Christian "new" adults, especially in our current hypersexualized society, have a struggle in front of them went it comes with dealing with this issue. Ignoring sex and the desire/temptation thereof does no one any good.
Writing "New adult" fiction from a Christian worldview has the ability to SHOW not TELL... show the struggles--the failures--the consequences. There are a lot of great non-fiction books out there for Christian adults on the topic of sex, both for singles and married couples. But in story form? Not-so-much.
And as mentioned, the new adult genre is really NOT all about sex. There are a lot of things new adults have to tackle. Drugs/alcohol/integrity at a job/bullying--while these aren't narrowed only to new adults, they are big topics for that age group, and we should not be afraid to throw the realistic life issues at our characters and see how they handle them. We have fascinating concepts we can weave in there too. Things like God's GRACE and MERCY and REDEMPTION. Even forgiveness-- both of others, and learning to forgive ourselves.
Discussion: What are your thoughts on this new "genre"? Have you ready any books from a Christian perspective that would fit? Do you think it is possible to tackle tough issues that new adults are facing in fiction without crossing "CBA" lines?
*************************************************Krista is a follower of Jesus, a wife, a mother, and author of Sandwich, With a Side of Romance (which just so happens to feature a 20-year-old heroine, GO FIGURE!) She blogs about finding JOY in the journey of LIFE at http://www.kristaphillips.com. She is represented by the fab agent, Rachelle Gardner.