Sunday, July 29, 2012

Wild Ink by Victoria Hanley (Review and Interview)

Wild Ink: Success Secrets to Writing and Publishing in the Young Adult Market by Victoria Hanley
Prufrock Press Inc.
ISBN: 978-1593638641
Published May 1, 2012
Paperback, 350 pages

After writing my first book, I started several other novels but nothing came of them and I found myself a little lost, until I started finding myself drawn more and more toward YA. I eventually started a YA novel, but I've encountered several obstacles. When I was offered to review Wild Ink, I jumped at the chance because it's just what I've been looking for.

I've read many good books on novel writing, but this one is geared for writers who want to break into the ever so popular YA genre. It's easy to read, well-organized and covers everything you need to know to write for teens, get an agent, and learn about the YA publishing industry. Hanley writes with an engaging style, and I found this resource book a pleasure to read.

Even though I know about novel writing, I paid particular attention to the two chapters that covered elements of novel writing, such as voice, point-of-view, dialogue, setting, conflict, themes, and so on. Writing for teens is different than writing for adults and I appreciated the advice and tips. The chapter that really got me thinking was the one that dealt with obstacles. I'm stuck in my writing and the author tackles each of the most common obstacles with good reasoning. Now I just need to apply the advice!

What I also found unique about this book is that Hanley includes tons of interviews with YA authors, and also some agents and publishers. I liked reading what they had to say. She also covers writing nonfiction YA, editing, and self-publishing. A lot of the info in this book was familiar to me mostly because I am a self-published author who's worked with editors, done research on marketing, and now blogs about books. Book reviewing has opened up the world of publishing to me better than any research. Therefore, I was able to appreciate how Hanley covers this in her book.

So if you are thinking of writing and publishing a YA novel, this one will set you on the right track. Hanley even made sure to include a whole chapter on resources for writers to complement Wild Ink and to help you hone your craft.

Note: This book is rated C = clean read.

A Short Q&A With Victoria Hanley

How did the idea for Wild Ink come about?
Participants in my workshops at writers’ conferences were eager for more complete information on writing for young adults (YA). There’s so much to say about this fascinating subject—more than can be covered in a few hours.

Why do you write young adult fiction?
I’m drawn to coming-of-age stories full of intensity, growth, and passionate voices.

What do you see as the future of young adult fiction?
More and more readers will discover this genre, and for good reason. YA novels are fast-paced and well-written, starring dynamic young characters who wrestle with all the pressures of life. Irresistible! I expect the market to keep expanding.

What about the future of YA nonfiction?
Nonfiction YA is an exploding genre right now. Hundreds of topics are just waiting for knowledgeable authors to write about them in a refreshing style that appeals to teens. (Wild Ink includes a chapter on writing nonfiction YA.)

What makes Wild Ink stand out from other books on writing/publishing YA fiction?
Wild Ink is packed with examples from novels such as Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games, giving readers in-depth tips on how to turn their own ideas into riveting stories. Dozens of interviews with writers, editors, and agents provide an inspirational view of what’s happening in the industry and how to approach finishing a book and getting published.

How can I contact you to learn more about Wild Ink or the young adult market?
Please contact for more information on my book or visit my website,, to find out how to contact me directly.

About the author:
Victoria Hanley loves to nurture emerging writers. She is the award-winning author of the best-selling books, Seize the Story: A Handbook for Teens Who Like to Write and Wild Ink: How to Write Fiction for Young Adults. She is also a YA novelist published in 13 languages. Her books have received awards and honors in the U.S. and abroad, including the International Reading Association Young Adults’ Choices, the Colorado Book Award, Kallbacher-Klapperschlange Award (Germany), Colorado Authors League Top Hand Award, Publishers West Silver Award, and New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age. Her work has also been placed on state award lists in Texas, Oklahoma, Utah, and Colorado, and earned a Carnegie Medal nomination in the United Kingdom.

Reviewed by Laura

Disclosure: Thanks to Sourcebooks for sending me this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.

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