Heart in Darkness

What do you remember about being a teenager? Highs and lows, friendships and breakups, betrayals and comraderie? Did your reading selections reflect the events in your life or did you search out escapist literature? Did adults interfere in what you read?


Sherman Alexie writes a powerful piece about some of the darkest moments in his teenage life, and the impetus they gave him to write for YA. Here is an excerpt:

“And now I write books for teenagers because I vividly remember what it felt like to be a teen facing everyday and epic dangers. I don’t write to protect them. It’s far too late for that. I write to give them weapons–in the form of words and ideas-that will help them fight their monsters. I write in blood because I remember what it felt like to bleed.”