A few weeks ago, I shared How I Came Up with Sleeping Around, and this week, I’m sharing why I decided to write the book at all.
Because, let’s be honest, writing a book is an massive, daunting amount of work.
Toni Morrison basically sums up my decision in a simple, beautiful quote:
“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet,
then you must write it.”
SLEEPING AROUND is a book I want to read, especially a book I wish I read before or during college.
I decided to write SLEEPING AROUND because I wanted to read a young adult book with a college setting.
College-aged people are missing in publishing. There’s young adult (typically 18 or younger) and adult (18 and older). Young adult typically features high-school-aged protagonists, while adult typically features late-twenties-and-up protagonists.
New Adult books were a thing for a hot second, but then they turned more into erotica. Despite the title, SLEEPING AROUND is definitely not erotica.
Anyway, SLEEPING AROUND has a home within young adult.
I decided to write SLEEPING AROUND because I wanted to read a young adult book that featured the foster care system.
One day, I hope to be a foster parent.
You know how some people feel “called” to be a parent? I feel that way more so with fostering.
So I think another element missing from young adult is the voices and stories of those within the foster care system.
Though I was never a system kid, I spent hours upon hours and days upon days researching foster care and its history. I hired a sensitivity reader.
Hopefully, SLEEPING AROUND is an accurate depiction of foster care.
I decided to write SLEEPING AROUND because I wanted to read a young adult book that incorporated music.
If you checked out my Music page, you know that music is important to me. Music is another way of sharing your voice and your story.
In SLEEPING AROUND, my protagonist Cora plays the violin, and it means everything to her. It’s her future.
Cora is relatable. Because who doesn’t love music?
I decided to write SLEEPING AROUND because I wanted to read a young adult book that had the messy, confusing, complicated friendships and romances of college students.
Did anyone else have roller coaster college relationships?
College is all about figuring out who you are and who you want to be. When you and everyone around you are dealing with these existential, life-changing questions, tension can be high.
People can change their minds about statements they made five minutes ago.
SLEEPING AROUND shows these messy relationships and all their glory.
What do you think is missing from young adult books? Let me know in the comments!