Lucy Powrie, who blogs as Queen of Contemporary, is a big supporter of UKYA. Last week, she hosted a UKYA chat on Twitter and it was a great success so we asked her to tell us a bit more about it…
The majority of authors and bloggers now use Twitter. Twitter is a huge platform that helps to connect people together and, personally, I am addicted to it. On Friday 19th July, I hosted a UKYA themed Twitter chat and was amazed at the reception it got. According to my rough calculations, I think around 30-40 people joined in, including authors, publishing people, bloggers and readers of UKYA.
Both fashion bloggers and beauty bloggers have their own chats, and I saw a gap. I wanted to get more people excited about UKYA and we don’t have anything like this in the UKYA. With the Olympics and golden jubilee last year, I thought it was about time that people got excited about UKYA books, and what better way than talking about them with other people?
From the chat, it was clear that people really want to see more character diversity in UKYA and I think this reflects well on our multi-cultural country. Ethnicity and diversity came up a lot.
Readers are also in need of a good fantasy or urban fantasy. People want more than just the contemporary novels that are so prominent at the moment, and taking a look at my UKYA shelf shows this.
Books that were mentioned quite a lot included ACID by Emma Pass and Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt. Both popped up on nearly every question and, being two of my favourite UKYA novels, this really pleased me. ACID is a scarily realistic dystopian and Skin Deep deals with body image and stereotypes.
One of the things I loved most about the chat was that everyone was equal. It’s very easy for bloggers and authors to feel separate from each other, but in this chat everyone was alike.
Following the success of this first chat, I have decided to stage another one at the end of August, date to be confirmed. I’ve had loads of tweets since finishing from people who missed the chat but really wanted to join in, and so I’m hoping that even more people will turn up for the next one.
I also have lots of other UKYA plans in the works, which I’m hoping will happen in the next few months. It’s a very exciting time for the UKYA community and it makes me happy to think that from the chat, people will go out and buy these books. Supporting our authors is very important.