Are you writing a Middle Grade, YA or NA book? These specialized genres are some of the most popular. Some of the most well-known include, for Middle Grade, Diary of a Wimpy Kid and the Harry Potter series. The Twilight series dominated the young adult books for years. And New Adult, while fairly new, has a loyal audience among those who grew up on Harry Potter and other great books. Come back often for new Middle Grade or YA book ideas, or sign up for my newsletter below.
(New Adult books are those written for readers ages 18 to 25 and protagonists no older than 30, Young Adult books are for readers ages 14 to 18 and Middle Grade books are for ages 8 to 12. Writers have found these books tend to attract readers of all ages.)
Exciting YA Book Ideas
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Space Camp for kids includes launching a rocket, hopefully not through NASA’s window
…one/sixth gravity chair. The kids also make and launch a rocket.
Two kids who made a poster of themselves and hung it in a McDonald’s make it a campaign
- Crazy Middle Class Asians is a Young Adult book about two YA-age Asian kids who begin a campaign of creating Asian love and awareness where there is none. Based on a prank at McDonald’s that ended up as a hilarious Ellen segment, the book is about a journey of self awareness as the two begin as vandals and end as heroes. In the McDonald’s prank, two young Asian men who ate at a McDonald’s every day noticed a blank wall. The room’s decor represented different ethnicities but omitted Asians. So the two made a professional looking poster of themselves, went to Goodwill and bought McDonald’s uniforms, and hung the poster. It went unnoticed for two months until the tweet of the prank went viral. In the book, this idea could be expanded. Posters and paintings by artist friends could be hung all over the city or the nation or the world. It could be the beginning of something.
Teddy Boys and Teddy Girls kill a kid and almost got away with it, but hit a fashion snag
- Bad Boys from the Past: Teddy Boys and/or Teddy Girls. This teenage fashion-and-music-based rebel group emerged in London post-World War II. The boys became famous and feared when newspapers ran pictures of police fighting rioting teens and after some Teddy Boys killed another teenager. Sometimes rich kids, sometimes just fashionable, they inspired hatred and fear. The girls were mostly ignored. These Teddy Girls, or Janies, were mostly working class, some were Irish immigrants, and they wore neo-Edwardian clothes. The Teddy Girls rebelled against post-war austerity. Some places banned anyone dressed in this style. This mostly forgotten group would fit well in a coming-of-age, love story, or 1950s prequel. Maybe the rebellious teens of the late 1950s had a Teddy Boy or Teddy Girl parent.
Funny Middle Grade Book Ideas
A 10-year-old is living alone in a secret library cubby hole
- Life in the Stacks is a Middle Grade book about a 10-year-old who is homeless and finds the secret living quarters that are in some old libraries. Originally populated by library caretakers, most have been sealed off and made into rare book rooms. Perhaps some are still livable, left in the condition of the last person who lived in it. Or the caretaker still lives there and is visiting his Mom in Florida. Like the movie, Nights at the Museum, the book could be a very funny romp through a haunted library. Maybe there are spirits of the books. Or ghosts. A funny janitor. A monkey from the zoo who comes in through a skylight that’s always open.
Heartwarming NA Book Ideas
Yo, Patient Zero! I’m not going to tell anyone who I am
- Yo, Patient Zero! is a NA or Commercial Fiction about a young adult who has just begun living the life of his dreams when he starts to realize he was patient zero in the world’s 2020 Pandemic. People all around him are getting sick, and he at first is disturbed and then realizes that while he was in Wuhan backpacking he had accidentally walked into a research lab next to the market suspected of being ground zero for Covid-19. He got all the way into the center of the building, looking for a bathroom, because they thought he was a delivery guy. What does he do? Should he tell someone? How can he live with this burden?