Lois Lowry was recently interviewed for the Washington Post (an in-depth interview where she talks about writing in her head as a child, lying, and the way she learned to shape a story, and a sidebar). The sidebar included a lot of background info, some interesting details, and was fine until the last section, where the interviewer asked Lowry: “Has she ever contemplated writing a novel for grown-ups?”
This is a question that children’s and teen writers so often hear, and the implication is that children’s and teen fiction is somehow not equal to adult fiction, somehow not as worthy of the questioner’s time. It’s a question many of us come to grit our teeth about.
So Lowry’s response is beautiful and inspiring: “I’m doing something far more valuable, writing for someone who is wide open — aged somewhere between 10 and 14. I’m preparing kids to enter the difficult world of contemporary times.”
Lois, I love what you said! You said it for so many of us. Thank you. 🙂 That quote will go down as one of my favorites.
It’s similar to what Madeline L’Engle once said: “You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.”
Thank you to Just Like a Nut for pointing this out.