ABC Radio National talks sex in YA fiction

Newswrite MagazineAnother lovely sunny day in Sydney! Just a quick update to point people to a great broadcast ABC Radio National Books and Arts Daily ran this morning, picking up my Newswrite magazine article on Sex in Young Adult Fiction.

You can read my article in full by clicking here. A quick recap… in it I ask publishers, parents, booksellers and teen readers ‘how far is too far’ when it comes to depicting sex in books for teenagers.

On the ABC’s program this morning, host Michael Cathcart asked authors Margo Lanagan (author of Tender Morsels) and Julia Lawrinson (author of Losing It) what they thought about writing about sex for teens. He also chatted with 19-year-old Steph Bowe (also a YA author), to get a younger reader’s perspective.

A bit of background… Lanagan’s Tender Morsels is a reworking of the Brothers Grimm fairytale of Snow White and Rose Red, and contains rape, incest etc. It was published as both an Adult and Young Adult book in Australia and the UK (but only as Young Adult in the US). Lawrinson’s Losing It is about four teenagers who make a pact to lose their virginity before schoolies week. It’s fairly explicit, but also humourous. I wonder whether this helps to soften the blow for the ‘censors’ (parents, school librarians etc)…?

It was a great discussion, though I for one would have loved it to have gone a little longer! You can catch it by clicking here.

I was also invited to ‘guest tweet’ during the program. If you’re interested, you can read my tweets (hopefully spelled correctly – it was all a bit of a whirl!) right here.

Better still, tell me what you think! How much sex is too much in teen fiction? What does it depend on? Do you think books like Tender Morsels and Losing It deal with it appropriately?

Would love to hear your views!

~ DF

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