Does Religion Belong in Teen Books?

I didn’t know I was breaking a taboo when I wrote OyMG.  But apparently, religion is one of the last taboos in teen books.  (Or so I’ve been told.)  Granted, religion has been known to cause wars and destroy nations.  So, I can see why it might be safer to let sleeping dogs lie, so to speak.

But lately, it does seems as if the dog is waking up.  A number of recent books include religious elements, such as Melissa Walker’s new YA, Small Town Sinners, and Tess Hilmo’s soon-to-release middle grade With a Name Like Love.

Facing My Fear

I’m getting too old for this.

When I was younger and faced with a challenge, I’d tell myself it was an opportunity to grow, to face down a fear, and to become a stronger person. For those reasons, I took a singing part in community theater.  I took on Art Masterpiece for my kid’s elementary school.  I this year, I went from bookstore to bookstore and hawked myself and my book.  And yes, I’m a stronger person for all of that.

But can I stop now?

Guilty Pleasure

A good friend called me last week and asked if I could recommend a book.  “What are you reading right now?” she asked.

In fact, I was in the middle of a book at the time–one that I really liked.

But when I opened my mouth to tell her, the title stuck in my throat.  Could I say it?  Dare I admit the truth?  Feelings of guilt and embarrassment rushed through me.  I had the urge to lie.