Follower Love Giveaway Hop ~ Guest Post: WHY I WRITE YOUNG ADULT NOVELS by author Jessica L. Jaster

 photo followerlove_zpsb79508a7.pngHi there everyone, Paul here with a guest post from YA author Jessica L. Jaster as we kick off the Follower Love Giveaway Hop hosted by Kathy at I Am A Reader Not A Writer and The Reader’s Antidote.

 I know Sher usually does the YA books, but I connected with Jessica on Goodreads and after doing so went to read the “look inside” feature of her debut novel Delta Project:Hide on Amazon. I immediately connected with the main character and loved the story. I needed to read more. I am very happy to have made the connection with Jessica. I enjoyed her book and she is a wonderful person. I wondered why she picked YA as her genre so I asked. So, with no further delay, I give you Why I Write Young Adult Novels by Jessica L. Jaster.

You are probably expecting me to say I write young adult novels because that is what is big right now. That I write young adult because that’s where the fans are. And while all that certainly is appealing, it’s not why I write young adult novels.

PhotobucketTo help you understand why I write young adult and why I love the genre so much, I am going to have to explain something about, well, myself. I was very lonely as a child and teenager and because of that, I often felt lost and confused – not sure of whom I really was. Some might wonder how I could be lonely when I had four siblings to hang out with. The thing is that while family is extremely important, it is also important to have other people in your life as well. To have friends.

I didn’t have any friends – not really. There were a few people I would talk to during class and at school, but that was pretty much the extent of those friendships. You see, I had a problem – one I still struggle with today (although, not nearly as much). The problem was that I was painfully shy, which was not helped by the fact that in the totality of my childhood and teenage years, my family moved four times and switched schools eight or nine times. Not something that helps when you are as shy as I was.  
What does this have to do with writing young adult novels, you ask? Hold tight, I’m getting there. Since I felt so lonely, I ended up taking up reading as a way to spend my time. I read a lot – in school and out of school. And what type of books did I read? You guessed it! Young adult novels. While I was doing all this reading, I would often find myself veering off the book’s path and making up my own story in my head. I would get lost in that story and the characters I made up.
It still was not until a few years ago that I really started to get over my shyness a bit, but as I started writing my story ideas down and as I read young adult novels by other authors, I discovered myself. Our teenage years are a critical time of self-discovery and that is a tale that is pretty much always told in young adult novels. As a character within a novel discovers him/herself, I believe that the reader (whether young adult or adult) can simultaneously discover something about themselves.  
So, that is why I write young adult novels. Because of the love of reading them I had and still have and also because of what they have helped me discover about myself. And so that hopefully, I can help some readers down that road of self-discovery myself.

Here’s what Goodreads has to say about Jessica:  Jessica Jaster lives in Iowa with her husband and her (currently) one year old and two year old. She has always had an over-active imagination and has been making stories up in her head for herself for as long as she can remember and finally decided to start writing them down (when she is not busy chasing the two little ones around anyway) and sharing them with anyone interested. Most ideas she has so far for her novels are for young adults, some fantasy, some science fiction and some normal contemporary story-lines.

Book reviewer and authors wanted:

If you’re a children’s book author (from picture books up through YA) who doesn’t have a blog, or if you’re a reader who wants to share book reviews on our blog, please contact Sher or me. We provide free training and free books to review here. In return, we ask for a six month commitment. After that you can stay with us or start your own blog. 

Also, in case you missed it we’re attempting to put together an Author Cooperative. We would like to assemble a cooperative of ten to twenty authors and bloggers. The individuals would write and/or blog in the same genre as we do, children’s books, from picture books to middle grade and YA. For information click here.

Now for those giveaways. Please enter the Sunshine Syndicate tour and huge giveaway. Head on over to the Jack Templar: Monster Hunter Book Blast Giveaway too (again, not the same as the tour giveaway). Last but not least, the Silver-White Book Blast giveaway offers a generous $100 prize, so make sure to stop by. For a middle grade author spotlight opportunity, and sign ups for a March Kindle Fire giveaway with low-cost entries for bloggers and authors, please click here. You can also win a Kindle Fire, a $10 Amazon gift card or a great middle grade book by treating yourself and your kids with a special gift this Valentine’s Day! Love Middle Grade Actually is a sample of 14 exciting middle grade stories that you will love, and I am proud to be a part of.Click here to download the book Love Middle Grade Actually. Don’t forget to leave us a comment, and tell us why you like/read YA books.

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Indie author-friendly freelance editor, children's book blogger for picture books through YA, kid lit, SF/fantasy lover with special fondness for middle grade, pun-loving SCBWI member, meter-maid for poetry and rhyming picture books.


  1. I love innocense the most about YA books.

  2. Hi Jenna,
    Thanks so much for stopping by & sharing!

    Paul R. Hewlett

  3. I love how easy to read they are and how each one is original.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing Jenna and Meghan!! I totally agree with both your reasons for reading YA! Jenna – there is definitely something special about that period between childhood and adulthood, when the innocence is still intact and when young adults really begin to discover themselves. Meghan – Yes! There is such a variety among YA books, it really is kind of amazing!

    • Hi Jessica,
      Thanks for stopping by! I love the guest post and I’m certain our readers will too!


    • Jessica,
      I think you picked the perfect subject for your first book. I truely look forward to seeing the next one in the set.

      Love you, Mom

    • Hi Mom!
      I agree with you. I can’t wait for the next one. I really loved how I get to look forward to reading more about these people I have really come to care for, yet the book ended. So many books end in cliffhangers and you feel like you HAVE to go get the next one just to try to get some closure. Not so with Hide. Ah, but I better stop rambling before I give away too much of my upcoming review 🙂 So nice that you stopped by and supported your daughter, you should be very proud of her.


  5. Thanks so much for the wonderful giveaway. This sounds like a great book! I really enjoyed the background behind Jessica’s love of YA. I like YA because it brings me back to how I felt during those times.

    • Hi Jess,
      Great to see you! I hope all is well. You’re welcome, I really enjoyed the book that’s for sure. I also enjoyed her guest post, eeww, teenage years, I’m glad they are over 🙂 Thanks for sharing. Have a great night.


    • Thank you Jess! I think it’s a great book, hehe. Thank you for sharing. 🙂 I have to agree with Paul though, I’m glad my teenage years are over, as well lol!

  6. I think it’s true what you said about self-discovery in YA books/characters. That is what I like reading about: seeing them figure out their path and place in life

    • Hi Veronica,
      I’m sure Jessica will be happy to read your comments. I thought her guest post was really personal, revealing, and hit home. I’m not sure I know anybody that didn’t struggle with things as least a little during their teenage years. Thanks so much for stopping by & sharing.


    • Hi Veronica! Thank you so much for sharing!! Totally agree with you, as I stated in a previous post, which I believe you saw anyway haha. Thanks for stopping by!

  7. The love is so innocent and exciting.

  8. love innocense the most about YA books.

  9. Hi! The reason I read YA books is because I read just about everything, LOL. I like the fact that most of them an easy read compared to adult books. They don’t seem to be as dark and grisly as the adult books, so when I am in certain moods I turn to YA.
    GFC follower VettekLisa

  10. I feel like I’m a young adult whenever I read YA books. 😀

  11. Good answer, Anne! This is probably extremely geeky/dorky of me, but a lot of the time when I read YA and am picturing the scenes from the book in my head, I will inject a younger version of myself into the story as one of the characters. Although, this is often how I end up thinking up my own stories. So dorky or not, it’s not something I’m going to stop doing any time soon.
    Thanks for stopping by and sharing Anne!!

  12. I can definitely relate to your shyness as a child….and no, moving certainly does not help. I am glad you found an escape through books. I love reading YA because I can relate to them and their hardships in a lot of the cases…Ya authors have a certain way of portraying angst, confusion and a happiness that can’t always be found in other books in quite the same way.
    oddball2003 at hotmail dot com

    • Hi there, thanks for such a nice comment. Your comments about YA is so accurate. I agree with you, YA books certainly put an emphasis on angst, and all the things teens go through Thanks for stopping by!


    • Hi! Thank you so much for sharing and taking a look at my post!! I think my parents probably loved that I enjoyed reading so much, as well, since I was always reading instead of getting myself into trouble lol. I agree, everything is portrayed way differently in YA books. I love it!

  13. I just love how fun they are. They seem to have more depth 🙂
    Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

  14. I love young adult because it brings me back to my youth. The stories I have been priveledged to read have been fantastic. Jessica is new for me and I’ve adopted her. Her talents are amazing and I loved her first book. Can’t wait to read the next one. Mom Jacquie here.

  15. They let me escape my real world

  16. I love YA books because it brings back the memories of my youth days.

    Thanks for the lovely Giveaway.

    My Email Id :

  17. Thank you so much Bidisha, for stopping by and checking out my guest post, as well as sharing!

  18. It brings me back to a time with no worries and love/romance was ALL I focussed on. Nice to reminiss(spelling?) through reading.

  19. they are usually shorter then what I am used to

  20. They’re easy to get lost in the worlds they portray and make you forget your own problems for awhile.

  21. I love dystopia. There really isn’t any available in the adult section. Just YA which is just fine with me. I love ’em.

  22. Keeps me young at heart. Remember the way things used to be – not with regrets or the feeling that I want it to be like that again – just look back and smile. I love where I am now.

  23. I like that they are light easy entertaining reads.

    thank you for the giveaway!

    deborah on rafflecopter

  24. I love YA because it takes me back to bygone days. They are just fun and easy to read without too much angst and usually have a HEA. I looked up the blurb for your book and will definitely get it if I don’t win! Sounds great!!
    Bonnie Hilligoss/

    • Hi! I totally agree, there is usually an HEA in YA books – although sometimes it does take a few books to get to that HEA lol. I’m glad that you are so interested in reading my book!! It is really hard, as a new author, to get noticed and to get your book out there, so this makes me happy. 🙂

    • I’ve been reading all these comments and agreeing with all the great reasons to read YA as well as the shy childhood part. But this HEA was something new. I had to look it up. Yeah, that Happily Ever After ending is definitely harder to find in books written for adults. And intimate sex scenes make me feel like a voyeur. That can’t be healthy. It’s sad it’s become so prevalent that a huge chunk of adults have turned to YA for that reason alone.

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