Audience Appreciation. 

One of the problems I’ve had so far with The Delta Children is figuring out exactly what kind of audience I’m writing for. With the Out of the Void books, its been a lot easier – urban fantasy is its own audience, and they’re relatively easy to pitch, as it were. Werewolves and wizards can sell themselves with little difficulty. 

As I’ve mentioned before, though, I’ve never written SciFi before. Its new ground for me, and I struggled for a little while as to exactly who it was aimed at – mainly in terms of age group. 

Initially, one of my main influences in my story ideas was John Wyndham, author of The Kraken Wakes, Day of The Triffids, and most important significantly, The Chrysalids. 

The primary difference in The Delta Children, of course, is that the changes to the children are very much created by humanity at large, with the four Deltas having been created for the intention of military exploitation. 

I have started to settle into the story and adapt to my characters in the recent words, but I’m coming to the point where the characters are moving out into the broader world, and I’ll have to establish the government and world in general. 

The main things I’ve had to think about thus far, though, is language and violence. I’ve tried to maintain a policy of minimal swearing, but sometimes it feels natural for the characters to use bad language, either in anger or in insult. The problem is, the instant you  do that, it upgrades the story from being something you can aim at a teen audience to one that’s aimed at adults. 

Weirdly, I think that a lot of my thoughts were arising from the fact that my characters are children themselves. The oldest of the lead quartet is sixteen yearanold, and these kids have been raised in a secure facility for their entire lives. In an odd way, I think I’m a little protective of them. 

It may get darker from here. There are strange places for the group to go. 

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4 Comments

  1. I’ve had to deal with this issue too, and it seems the general consensus is: whatever age the main characters are, that’s *probably* the age of readers that the book will be marketed to. There are definitely exceptions! But those get into blurrier territories, like content and approachability and writing style. But the *general* rule of thumb seems to be: kids read about kids, teens read about teens, adults read about adults.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The main issue so far with this story is that there’s a lot of stuff that won’t be aimed at kids – there’s some awful stuff I have planned for these characters, so I need to stop being so protective of them, really!

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      1. Hmmm, well if most of your characters are 13 and up, then your book could be classed as YA, and YA has a lot of violence. If most are quite young though, then you might be in a pickle. 😦 Sounds like a tough spot. I hope it gets worked out one way or the other!

        Liked by 1 person

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