The edge of YA

A friend told me that Millennials are having less sex because their parents are too open about it, and it no longer seems rebellious. This weekend, I started to worry that my children won’t have any secret books stuffed under their mattresses because their mother doesn’t adequately censor their reading material.

We are on that very precarious edge of middle-grade/young-adult in my house. When Silence casts a book aside, it’s often because she’s deemed it “inappropriate” — a judgement she makes more harshly than I do. (I’ve promised her she can read my YA novel, Prince of Pot, when it comes out this fall, but I have a feeling she’s going to put me on her censored list.)

Last week, we went to Susin Nielsen’s launch for Optimists Die First. Silence is a HUGE Susin Nielsen fan and she was already reading while in the line-up for autographs. But once we were home and she was halfway through, she stalked into the living room, cast the book down on the couch between Min and me, and said, “This is inappropriate.”

I looked at what she was reading. There is a fairly gentle make-out-session/fade-to-black sex scene in the middle of the book.

So, fine. It’s good that Silence is making her own decisions about what she’s ready to read.

There’s only one problem…. We got a signed copy of the book for one of Silence’s friends.

So, do we NOT give her the book? Do we give it to her and tell her not to read it for a few years? If we give it to her, do I have to email her parents? And why aren’t there parenting guidelines on Facebook for this sort of situation?

The upside: I now get to read the book myself. And it is hilarious. And wise. And oh-so-perfectly appropriate for me.

Word on the Street

I took my Seeing Red show on the road yesterday (literally on the road) at Word on the Street.

Thanks to an audience chock full of friendly faces, it was great fun. (Thank you, Rachelle and Jacqui and Shannon and Megan and Kit and family members whom I may or may not have paid to attend.)

I got to talk about how the ancient Gauls sacrificed their enemies, how blood solved baby mix-ups in the early 1900s, and how early blood analysis techniques saved people from murder raps.

I also learned a great presentation technique. Get yourself sandwiched between the witty Susin Nielsen and the wonderful Kit Pearson. Voila! Guaranteed crowd!

An interesting coincidence: speaking before Susin was Gina McMurchy-Barber. Gina and I met almost a decade ago, at a great Booming Ground workshop led by Kit Pearson. And of course, Kit Pearson was speaking just a few minutes later. You have to love cosmic mash-ups.

Check this space tomorrow. Official announcement on it’s way…