I found this amazing video on UPWORTHY.com and it made me stop and think about my own books. Having a strong female protagonist, like Calli Courtnae, speaks to girls, sure, but what about the boys? What kind of messages am I sending to male readers, particularly the younger ones? Colin Stokes makes some impressive points in the video below about what movies should be teaching young boys about how to interact with girls--how to respect girls.

If you are a parent, exercise greater influence on what your children are exposed to and what they read. Only you can determine what is appropriate for your own kids. The best way to teach your children anything is by example, so be careful how you behave. (Easier said than done.)

If you are an author or aspiring writer of young adult fiction, you should stop and think about your readers (which isn't to say you haven't already). Consider the younger generation and what kind of messages they will take from your work, and then write accordingly. One of the most amazing emails I've received was from a ten-year-old boy who said he related to my character, Chris Harding, in A Diamond in My Pocket. I had to stop and think for a second what this boy could have identified with exactly, and should I be worried? I didn't write my books with ten-year-old kids in mind, let alone boys. I guess I thought the books wouldn't keep their interests. Boy, was I wrong.

Heading into book five and beyond of The Unaltered Series
, I'm humbled to realize just how many young readers are engrossed in the books and characters. Finding and watching Colin Stokes' video is the shot-in-the-arm I've needed to jump on the writing train.

What do you think about the video below?