Former reality TV star Lauren Conrad is on a book tour promoting her teen series, L.A. Candy. A movie is already in the works! If she can write and publish teen novels, we all can right? Probably, if you subscribe to the whole everyone-has-one-good-novel-in-them theory.
The more important question is, what is the likelihood of having your teen novel published? Conrad is not a writer by trade, but she has the social capital to get anything she wants published or turned into a movie/television show. Publishers approach her to pen a ten series about a reality TV star. I certainly don’t have publishers knocking down my door (except in my dreams). In fact, I’m lucky if a publisher doesn’t throw my un-opened manuscripts straight into the trash bin.
Then there’s Stephanie Meyer. She had never written so much as a short story before in her life. Then, she wrote Twilight, a story that came to her in a dream. Meyer had intended to keep the story to herself, but after reading the finished version, her sister convinced her to send it to a publisher. Meyer wrote 15 letters; 9 were rejected, 5 went unanswered and 1 was positive. Finally, there was an auction for her manuscript and Ms. Meyer received $750,000 for her Twilight series. Not too shabby for a woman who never wrote. Maybe there is still some hope in getting published the old-fashioned way! Maybe all it takes to get published is coming up with an original, heart wrenching story idea plus an effective pitch letter.
There’s always self publishing, I suppose, if you are in to that sort of thing. The verdict is still out on that. People on Twitter try to convince me daily that self-publishing my work is the way to go, but I’m not too sure. I could be convinced.
I guess there are worse things for celebrities to do besides write teen novels. At least Lauren Conrad’s claim to fame is not undergoing multiple plastic surgeries like her Hills nemesis, Heidi Montag. Regardless, I still like to think that if Lauren Conrad can write teen novels, I can, too.
I think bringing up the organic publishing process with Twilight is interesting. While LC can publish books, I bet at best they’ll achieve modest success. A book that’s going to do really well might still come from a place that doesn’t merely leverage as you put, “social capital”.
At least LC’s not trying to write serious literature. It sounds like her books are today’s Sweet Valley High series, and she might be the perfect voice for that.
Maybe there’s a market out there for a Wisconsin-focused teen novel!
You’re right, Amy. These books appear to be today’s Sweet Valley High series. Stephanie Meyer gives me hope for the organic publishing process.
I like your idea of writing a Wisconsin-focused teen novel. I could become the modern day Laura Ingalls Wilder. Oh the possibilities!