Today I was supposed to post a review, but instead I’ve decided to write about something that’s been on my mind for a while. Today I’m going to be answering the question, Is Age Just a Number?
I started blogging when I was twelve. I am now thirteen, soon to be fourteen. Compared to many people I know, I would consider myself mature for my age but sometimes age gets in the way.
I worry that people will think badly of me if I review a new adult book, or if something I say will come across immature. This isn’t like me. I don’t normally care what people think of me but when it comes to age, I worry about how people perceive me. This was never a problem before I started blogging but now I’m talking to authors, publishers, bloggers and other people who are considerably older than me and sometimes I feel the pressure of having to act older and checking my writing and tweets to see if I’m acting immature.
Whenever I read a new adult book I worry about people thinking that I’m too young to read about such subjects and I even feel this sometimes with YA. I’ll have to write another discussion soon about screening what children read because that’s a topic for another day, but I’m happy choosing what I want to read and if I’m not comfortable with something I will put it down. I know my own limits.
Sometimes I can feel looked down upon. This usually happens when people call me ‘sweetie’ or ‘love,’ especially when these people don’t call people the same age as them or older these names. I wonder if I was older would I get more page views, comments, follows. Do people really want to read stuff written by a hormonal ridden teenager over a respected and experienced adult? Probably not.
I’m limited as to what I can do. I have to rely on my parents to take me to signings and launches and other events. I could get the train but this isn’t always possible and I don’t always feel comfortable doing this. I sometimes feel awkward meeting other bloggers because, hey, do people really want to talk to some kid?
One of the problems with the Internet is that people see me from my writing. Every tweet I write, every blog post adds to that list that everybody has of everybody else in their minds. If I write something that may seem out of character, people will clock this and this could potentially lead them to thinking badly of me. If someone mistakenly takes my tone for something more serious than it is, this could lead to unnecessary drama, which I try to avoid at all costs.
I don’t want this post to feel too negative. I’m a thirteen year old that receives books from publishers, I’ve met people that I talk to daily and would consider friends and I’m extremely proud of myself. Never would I have thought that I could achieve so much at such a young age. And I’m happy. I really am happy. I love reading and writing and I love my blog. I’ve found something that I can see myself doing for a long time.
I’m different than quite a lot of people my age because I know what I want to do with my life and I’ve found something that interests me. Many people I know don’t know what they want to do when they leave school and rely on other people to entertain them. I don’t crave attention. Far from it. I make my own entertainment- reading and writing- and I know that one day I would like to work in the publishing industry giving back the things I’ve gotten out of books.
As I mentioned above, I’ve wanted to write this post for a while now. My age does restrict me and I do feel older than I actually am. Most people I know are self-conscious about their hair or their clothes, but instead I worry about my age. It’s rather funny thinking about it, but it’s true and I suppose I’ll have to face the fact that I’m not going to age years over night.
If you’re a younger blogger, do you feel this way?
Eileen @ Singing and Reading in the Rain13 September, 2013 at 2:46 am
I feel the same way, Lucy! I just turned fourteen and being significantly younger feels so different in the blogosphere. Personally, I love seeing teens around here because we’re basically the embodiment of what YA is about, but it’s definitely intimidating having to navigate through blogging while carrying the knowledge that you’re a LOT younger. I definitely feel my age sometimes, and I always worry about what I’m saying on my blog (although I totally ditch all reservations on Twitter) and I like to read NA, but I always feel SO weird doing so because I’m like seven years below that age range >.<
Fantastic post, Lucy! You captured my feelings about this so perfectly <33
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Charli @ To Another World13 September, 2013 at 7:10 am
I definitely feel like this. I started blogging at 11, though not book blogging, just generally. Then a few months ago I started TAW. I just turned 13, but like you, sometimes I feel looked down upon. I started reading YA at the age of 11 (I was reading teen when I was 8) and people found that quite curious. Now, I don’t talk to authors and publishers as much as you, yet, still being quite a new book blogger, but when I do I do feel that way. I sometimes feel like people don’t want to request a review simply because of my age. I guess it’s just how society works…
Charli @ To Another World recently posted…Blogger Spotlight #2: Cat from Through A Cat’s Eyes: Most Read Books!
Lisa M Forester13 September, 2013 at 7:14 am
Lucy, this is a great post! You should never feel pressure because of our age – in fact, I really value you opinion because of your age! I love to read (and write!) YA books – and who better to pick up recommendations from, or read reviews from, than a YA?!? And you arent the only one who can be age insecure – an adult who reads YA can certainly be judged! But I dont want to read chick lit!!! So why should I have to? The moral is – be yourself. Just in being a teenager you have something incredibly valuable to bring to the table – and dont let anyone make you feel otherwise! 🙂
Rita @ Weaving Pages13 September, 2013 at 7:27 am
You just said EXACTLY what I was thinking. Though I don’t really worry about my tweets, I do think about whether once someone knows my age, would they treat me differently? Would they mind the fact that I would have to bring a parent to a launch? I hope not, but I always think about these things.. Plus, would other adult bloggers want to talk to me if I met them?? Great post! Xxx
Sandra13 September, 2013 at 7:31 am
Great post, I sometimes feel that way, although I’m 17 right now, and I do belong to the Young Adult ‘age group’ according to websites, however I do enjoy (new) Adult books sometimes and also Middle Grade books. And I was joining Bout of Books 8.0 a couple of weeks ago, but you had to be 18 in order to join for the Grand Prize, I mean, most of the Young Adult bloggers are not 18, right? I felt a little weirded out. I really want to go to meetings and all, but since most bloggers are older than me, I don’t know if they would like my company or even want to talk to me. (fortunately, all meetings are in Amsterdam or far away for me, so I have to think a lot if I do decide to go there, as I have never been to meetings on my own, definitely, not by train, but that’s another story…) I do really get what you think. I have not only experienced this with blogging, but also with other things, which is just unfortunate, but those people did want to talk to me, even though they were 18 at the time and I was 13. I’m glad you posted this!
Sandra recently posted…Boy Meets Boy – David Levithan
Sunny A13 September, 2013 at 7:36 am
Wow this post is so accurate about how I’m feeling. Being the same age as you I can totally agree with everything. I don’t have money to buy my own books and I don’t know every word in the dictionary. When ever I meet older bloggers I feel wierd because they probably don’t want to talk to a young teen. I do feel I am more mature then most my age but it’s still something I’m shy about. This post is a great voice to people our age who feel the same way. Great Post!
Sunny A recently posted…REVIEW: The Distance Between Us by Kasie West
Danielle13 September, 2013 at 7:50 am
you’re 13? I thought you were like 19!! Okay freaking out, feeling old lol. I legit had no idea, not that it matters anyway but I’m running through my head now thinking did I ever say anything to you that wasn’t age appropriate…You definitely don’t have anything to worry about! I don’t visit a blog or make friends based on people’s ages and would hope they would do the same. I call everybody hon or doll so I hope that wasn’t me! Your blog is one of my faves and one of the first I check so your opinion is valued and your views and thoughts are so mature and well thought out I don’t know how anyone couldn’t give you the time of day! Because you’re awesome! <3
Danielle recently posted…Review: This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales
Carly Bennett13 September, 2013 at 8:31 am
Lucy, this is such a great post but take it from me, you should NEVER feel inadequate or worry because you’re an incredible blogger and I always look forward to your posts. I’ve been feeling really inadequate lately so I completely understand how horrible it can be but you’re amazing, I wish I was so productive and eloquent when I was a teenager – all I was doing was writing bad Gareth Gates fan fiction!xxx
Carly Bennett recently posted…Breaking the Block
Karen Guyler13 September, 2013 at 9:25 am
Hi Lucy, great post and I think the answer is yes, age is just a number. I was thinking the other day about how amazing it is that you, and other YA bloggers I follow, are so lucky to be able to get immersed in your dream by book blogging and reviewing and sharing and building up a community of like minds. I read like fury when I was 13 but had no one to share it with, reading back then really was a solitary activity. To be able to evaluate and review a story as you do is a fantastic life skill and if you say something about a book someone takes exception to, that’s on them and can happen to anyone of any age because reading (and loving or hating a story) is so subjective. And everything you say is valid because of your age and your life experiences as these are the things that make you you (and that, I think, is true for all of us). To know what you want to do in life now makes you very blessed (my 13 yr old hasn’t a clue…). So keep doing what you’re doing, haters are always going to hate whether you’re 13 or 73!
Sarah @ TotalTeenFiction13 September, 2013 at 9:37 am
Personally I read blogs from bloggers of all ages, from early teens like yourself right up to bloggers in their thirties and older who also review YA books, and the age of the blogger never bothers me at all! Sometimes I feel insecure because I’m older than the intended audience for YA books but then I see the wide range of people blogging about YA and I forget all about it 😀
I’m always surprised when you mention your age because you come across as so much older in your posts. When I think of myself at 13 (nearly ten years ago, eep!) I would never have been able to do what you do and write as well as you do. I just wouldn’t have had the focus! (Not to mention that I was still running off dial up internet at that time 😉 ) So I have a HUGE amount of respect for young bloggers because I know how much dedication and commitment it takes. Also it took me until my twenties to decide what I wanted to do with my life career wise so I am super jealous you got it figured out so young! 😉
When I was your age I was reading gory adult crime novels with all kinds of topics that probably would have put off other younger readers, but they were the books I loved! So as long as you are happy and comfortable with what you are reading then that is the most important thing 😀
I adore your blog and always love chatting with you on Twitter. Keep doing what you’re doing Lucy. <3
Sarah @ TotalTeenFiction recently posted…Review: The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Caroline Taylor13 September, 2013 at 9:45 am
This is so interesting as I come into it from the complete opposite end, I am 34 and feel embarrassed by my age as I always assume people think I should have grown up by now and be more mature, I haven’t achieved anything in my life particularly noteworthy yet you already have a wonderful blog. I really think you should embrace your age, you are already a great writer and you have so many wonderful years ahead of you. (I’m not jealous, honestly……OK, I so am!)
Maya @ The Book Nook13 September, 2013 at 9:57 am
This is such a great post, Lucy. I think that age is just a number, and you seem very mature compared to a lot of thirteen year olds. (Incidentally, I always thought you were fifteen…) People should be able to read whatever they want without being judged on it, and if you want to read Adult and NA, you should.
Maya @ The Book Nook recently posted…REVIEW: Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick
Rebekah @ Reflections of a Bookworm13 September, 2013 at 10:10 am
I don’t know how it works but bookworms seem to be more mature for their ages! I think with the reading options, you should read whatever you feel comfortable reading!
I used to read historical romances and great tragedies when I was 11 because I loved the interactions and the themes they hid underneath so I don’t think anybody could look down on you for reading what YOU want to read. If they do, send them my way 😉
Ahhhhh I’m so guilty of calling people “love” but it’s not an age thing for me, I just use it as a term of endearment for close friends! If it’s made you feel sad I’m so sorry 🙁
Fab post, Lucy and chin up. We have so much respect for you and the work you do as a PERSON not because of your age 🙂
Rebekah @ Reflections of a Bookworm recently posted…RB Reviews: Skulk
Francoise13 September, 2013 at 11:42 am
I think if you’re mature for your age then you can definitely read NA. Sometimes age is just a number. To be honest I thought you were older, I’m 14 as well so understand where you’re coming from. The internet is a hard place and you’re never going to please everybody and I think that’s important to keep in mind. You’re going to get haters. I say just keep doing what you do because your posts are amazing and I think reading NA is not a problem.
Francoise recently posted…Of Triton by Anna Banks
Jaimie Admans13 September, 2013 at 11:48 am
This is such a great post, Lucy! I’m not a blogger, but as an author who writes YA, I feel that younger bloggers should never be discriminated against. In fact, you’re extra important to me because you’re the target audience for YA books! I’m 28, and it’s often hard to tell if I’m writing YA that I like, that people my age might like in a nostalgic way, or if I’m writing YA that modern teenagers actually connect with and enjoy! Obviously that’s the goal of any YA author, and one of the most important things is the opinions of actual teenagers!
People of all ages read books, all reviews and opinions reflect that, and life would be very boring otherwise!
Melanie (YA Midnight Reads)13 September, 2013 at 12:18 pm
I just turned 14 exactly one week ago and I do think about the same things you do, Lucy. I’m always thinking about what older bloggers think of me and if they care of my opinion etc, and they do which is nice. I don’t think age matters, I read reviews and trust them if they’re supported with evidence or are logical, not depending on age.
Great post as usual! <33
Clover13 September, 2013 at 12:32 pm
What an interesting post. I find it a little sad and also understandable that you feel this pressure because of your age. It’s a hard one. I read and love your blog because of the great content that you put up on it. And I read other blogs by teenagers for the same reason. I’ll admit that I am over-critical of posts and blogs with lots of exclamation marks and large chunks of text written in capital letters and anything gif-heavy. And for those reasons I might not read other blogs by teenagers. But I’ve always found your writing (and tweets) to be quite mature and thoughtful and intelligent. I don’t think I would (or other people) would think badly of you or your blog if you relaxed more about things and showed your age more often.
I think in some ways us older bloggers feel the age thing in other ways too. We’re in our 20s and 30s and 40s and reading YA. I think a lot of us can and do feel defensive about our reading choices and deal with people’s prejudices about reading books for teenagers as well. Sometimes I’ll tell a person I’ve just met that I write a book blog focused on YA literature and I see this glaze come over their eyes and they shut down and become uninterested. And that’s their loss.
I also feel very hesitant in approaching teenage book bloggers like you for meet-ups and things. I feel very conscious about the age difference and I wonder if it would be too weird. Because even with these massive things in common (blogging, YA books), I still think ‘would a teenager want to hang out with me?’
I wish that I were as organised and hard-working and articulate as you are when I was a teenager. I think you’ve done an amazing job with your blog. Keep at it, you’re an inspiration.
Clover recently posted…Relationship History and what I’d like to see more of in YA…
Jack13 September, 2013 at 2:11 pm
You know what, I don’t care. If someone looks down on my blog and my writing because I’m a teen I just don’t bloody care. Let them. I read mostly Adult books and review them on my blog. I review them in my way, and I don’t care what people think of me because I’m a teen reviewing an adult book. So don’t fell bad!
Jack recently posted…Review: Vivian Versus The Apocalypse by Katie Coyle
Hollie @ Music, Books and Tea13 September, 2013 at 2:23 pm
I think you’re a great role model for all book bloggers out there because of all the time, effort and passion you put into your blog. At the end of the day, your reviews are your honest opinion on a book, and your personality is reflected in each review, that’s why I love reading them. Age is most definitely just a number, I’d still read your blog regardless of how old you were, because it’s a wonderful blog. When I was 14, I just wrote bad fan-fiction and played The Sims 2…the closest thing I got to a blog was some angst-ridden posts on livejournal. Brilliant post Lucy, I’ve respected YOU and your blog since I first came across it. (Truth be told, I don’t take a blind bit of notice of anyone’s age. As far as I’m concerned, everyone’s awesome because they love books, and that’s that.) 🙂
Hollie @ Music, Books and Tea recently posted…When Reading Stops Being Fun
Keren David13 September, 2013 at 2:45 pm
As someone who writes YA books I was fascinated to read your post. It’s funny, but YA books end up getting reviewed by bloggers who are often in their twenties, adult reviewers, teachers and librarians. It’s actually unusual to read a review by the target audience – teenagers! So we writers really value teenage bloggers and other teenage reviewers. We value the others as well, of course, but people your age are the ones we are writing for.
As for adult books, I’m sure the writers will be fascinated to know what you make of them. All writers want to be read, thought about and (hopefully) appreciated! So please don’t feel unworthy or self-conscious. I love your blog and I’m (cough cough) just a bit older than you!
Liz13 September, 2013 at 3:23 pm
Hi Lucy-Creature! <- I call loads of people Creature, trust me 😀
This is an incredible blogpost and I just wanted to say that you guys, the younger YA bloggers are the future of bookreviewers…and you guys are one of the reasons I decided to quit reviewing books for teens. Let me explain:
For ages I was this lone blogger attending publisher events long before other people started blogging and although I never felt my age, I started wondering about reading YA books and if my view of them was spot on because I am not the target / intended audience. Admittedly, I enjoy and love reading YA, but I was worried as I would be seen as this weirdo 40 year old woman falling in love with Maggie Stiefvater's characters or loving Four in Divergent or sobbing my eyes out reading The Hunger Games and falling in and out of love with John Green and Libba Bray and fan-girling at Laini Taylor.
I worried about being appropriate and not creepy. I mean, I'm old enough to be your flipping MUM!! How weird is that? But to continue: I looked around me at events I've been going to and I started seeing this shift in those attending. For years it's been me and other bloggers and reviewers my age and younger – from say around 22 years old and upwards. And suddenly there were a lot of new and younger faces. I remember going to an Orchard event at Headline's offices and there was this kid there and he was fourteen but he looked twelve and I thought: sweet, he came with his mum whose the reviewer. And then, OMG, he started talking to me about books and I got my notebook out to write down recommendations. That's when I realised that I had my fun as a reviewer and blogger. It was time to move in – and by then I had an agent and who knew what would happen next!?!
So, here's what I think: you are 200% the correct age for what you're doing. I love your blogposts, you are super cool and fun to chat to and you are creative and kind and generous. I had no idea you were 13. I don't care that you are 13. I care that you write great reviews and that I have fun chatting to you as an equal when we chat and freak out on Twitter.
Age is never about numbers, it's about a state of mind. These are words my mum told me when I was your age and I never forgot them and I hope I've lived those words. *shows off new rocking tattoo*
The world sees me as me, but inside I am so rock and roll I will make your eyes water. And I hope I never lose that feeling inside but sadly, the outside doesn't play along and so I look like me rather than…oh I don't know, the lead singer from Paramore.
Enjoy being 13 and then 15 and then 16 and by the time you're 30, you will rule the world. And if people look down on you for being young, it's invariably because they are legit old and miserable. So let them be old and miserable.
Do I get points for the most rambling blogpost?? It must be because senility has kicked in.
Emma Haughton13 September, 2013 at 3:32 pm
I’ve never given your age a thought. I just think you have a great blog, and write fab posts and reviews. As I write for teens, it’s really helpful to have insight into what teenage readers like and dislike in YA – though I suspect you’re not exactly a typical teenage reader 🙂
As for reviewing literature meant for an older age group, I don’t see a problem. When I was your age, I read lots of ‘adult’ novels. And after all, schools and examining boards all expect teen readers to understand and have opinions on so-called adult texts.
Helen Grant13 September, 2013 at 4:11 pm
Lucy, I don’t think your age matters at all, though I must say I did think you were older because your writing style is mature for your age! I think it’s great that you’re getting out there and talking about YA. I sympathise with the logistical aspects eg having to rely on parents for transport to events, but I don’t see any reason why a person of 13’s opinion is less worth listening to than that of someone older. You’re sure to have a fresh perspective anyway! And you haven’t had time to start repeating yourself like us old folks do… Good luck with your venture!
Ruby13 September, 2013 at 6:18 pm
Hi Lucy, great post!
I think I classify as a younger blogger (I’m 14, almost 15) and I totally know what you mean. I guess I have always felt that my writing is sophisticated, so I’ve never felt out of my depth, it’s just… before I started blogging I hadn’t thought much of the fact I might grow out of YA novels.
And that’s the difficult situation I’m in at the moment; I’ve decided to take a step back from YA and to review books I feel more confident reading: literary fiction. It’s at this point I feel as if I’m being judged by my age. I often get the impression people don’t trust my view on an adult book just because I’m a teenager & that they feel as if I should stick to YA.
Never mind though, great post!
Ruby recently posted…Wuthering Heights (and why you all should read it!)
Jess Hearts Books13 September, 2013 at 6:19 pm
I wish I was as accomplished as you when I was thirteen! I spent most of my free time writing about boys in my diary! You come across as so much older than thirteen and I think it’s great that you’re reading so much and blogging at your age – I wish I was as productive with my time back then! You also have the advantage of being YA books target audience which I bet is really helpful to authors and publishers to get a real teen readers feedback. This was a really insightful post. FYI I don’t think of you as a “kid blogger” or someone to look down on. I just see you as any other blogger whose opinions I enjoy reading and who has excellent taste in books! 🙂
Jess Hearts Books recently posted…Review for Soulmates by Holly Bourne
Rachael13 September, 2013 at 6:27 pm
The quality of your blog is really good, Lucy, and I think that’s what matters! When I was 13, I would have never dreamed of starting a blog, just because I had no idea what I was doing, so I’m really impressed with how you’ve set up your blog and how committed you are to it. Plus you write really well. All I was doing online at 13 was writing terrible fanfiction. Also you’re a great measure of whether a YA book is good for the YA market, as you are actually in the age group *cries about turning 20*. As for reading NA, there wasn’t technically NA when I was a teen, but I definitely read something equivalent at 14, and by 16 I was reading True Blood and Stig Larsson, so I’m really not the person to talk about this.
Rachael recently posted…About Time (2013)
Rachel @ Booktastic Reviews13 September, 2013 at 6:34 pm
I actually don’t have this problem… I love being a TEEN blogger reviewing TEEN books! After all, we shouldn’t even be remotely not taken seriously as the books we are reading and reviewing have been written for us, after all.
I still can’t believe you’re 13! You come across as someone much older – you write great, well written reviews, certainly much better than the reviews I wrote at 13! I’m nearly 16 and I started book blogging at 11/12 and have had the same opinion since then. To begin with I didn’t think I was getting any books to review because I was a newbie blogger, not because of my age – now though I can see why sending books to an 11/12 year old could cause some thinking… It makes me so happy knowing there are more teen book bloggers every day!
Anyway great post – thanks for sharing! 😀
Rachel @ Booktastic Reviews recently posted…Excerpt: Teardrop by Lauren Kate!
Anya13 September, 2013 at 6:38 pm
I think as long as you know your limits in reading, then yeah, age: totally just a number! I mean, I do worry a little that your reading some stuff that’s a little old for you, but that’s not for me to decide. And I’ve called you sweetie (I think) and I hope you don’t take that as an affront. To me, that means I care about you – I call most of my friends ‘dear’ or ‘sweetie’, even the cat! And as for meeting other bloggers, you’ve met me and I wasn’t that bad! Heck, I might be nearly 22 but I still feel like 18. I am so proud and a little jealous that you’re so great at blogging at such a young age compared to the rest of us!
Emma Pass13 September, 2013 at 6:51 pm
Fantastic post, Lucy – and I can’t believe you’re only 13; your reviews and posts are so thoughtful and well written, and you do so much to support writers, that I assumed you were a lot older.
You should read, write and tweet whatever you want – just because you’re young, it doesn’t mean that your opinion is somehow worth less than that of someone who’s older (that’s one of my pet peeves, actually, when people assume age = wisdom/experience!). It’s great to have a teenager’s perspective on YA *and* adult books, and saying younger bloggers shouldn’t be reviewing adult books is like saying adults shouldn’t read or review children’s books… which is ridiculous!
Please keep reviewing, keep blogging and keep doing all the good work you do. It’s more appreciated than you can ever imagine!
Faye @ A Daydreamer's Thoughts13 September, 2013 at 9:44 pm
There are a lot of things I could say in response to this post but I think all of those comments *points above* have pretty much said it all.
I think age should never matter. You’re the target age for YA and that’s great but that doesn’t mean you can ONLY read YA. If that were the case, all of us “older” (I don’t like to think of myself as old :P) bloggers shouldn’t be reading YA and should be sticking only to adult and new adult. Which would make for some very dull books 😛
The luxury of reading is that we can choose what we want to read, we don’t have age restrictions like on movies so it is okay to read whatever the hell we want to read. When I was thirteen I had already given up on teen books and was storming through the adult shelves. It is only as I’m now in my 20s that I’m returning to teen books, certainly not target audience anymore! So in short, don’t worry about others judging you, just read and enjoy the books that you want to read and enjoy. And if anyone has an issue with that, it’s their problem, not yours!
I think you’re a great person and a fantastic blogger and you’re age really doesn’t matter to me. I always love meeting fellow bloggers, no matter the age, because we all have the same interests and talking about books in person is just incredible, you know?
So, just try not to worry about it. We love you no matter how old you are! 🙂
Katy13 September, 2013 at 10:17 pm
You definitely shouldn’t worry about your age – your posts are great and for those of us who are writing YA fiction, it’s brilliant to have reviews from our target audience as well as from adult readers who love YA. What matters most is the love of books. As for the NA thing, when I was a teenager we were all reading Forever by Judy Blume and stuff by Jackie Collins and Jilly Cooper so I don’t think it’s a new thing that teenagers want to read stuff like that. I haven’t read a whole lot of NA, but the few titles I have read have worried me a bit just because the girls seem really dependent on or are totally defined by their boyfriends. To people who like NA, I always recommend Kate Cann’s earlier books like Moving Out, Moving On and Moving In – they deal with relationships in a much more even-handed way, with strong, tough heroines, and she’s got a real sense of humour, too. I also really loved From What I Remember for similar reasons.
Kyra14 September, 2013 at 9:12 am
Brilliant post, as always Lucy! 🙂
I agree with you! A lot of times when I speak to other bloggers and publicists I almost feel self-conscious in away, because to them I am just a kid. There have been quite a few times where when I have spoken to older bloggers on Twitter or emailing publicists, it sometimes makes me nervous as I start fretting that my emails come across as non-professional and that if I just make one mistake it could put my blog in jeopardy. And it is harder being a teen blogger, as you have to try and be a bit more mature so that you’re not viewed as silly or immature, but at the end of the day it will be worth it! 🙂
Kyra recently posted…Review – A Dog Called Homeless – Sarah Lean
Belle Read14 September, 2013 at 7:17 pm
Wonderful post. While I am not a younger blogger, I am an older than average blogger. I too have some of the same struggles, but in a different way. I recognize that my language is not appealing to some younger readers, and I am out of the loop on many topics, but in the end, I am who I am and I know that my blog will appeal to like minded readers if not others. You should be proud that you have accomplished what you have at such a young age. It is very impressive. I only wish that I had discovered book blogging years ago.
I do think that age is just a number. In fact, we see it every day in the blogging community. It is impossible to tell the age of a blog author based on the books that they read and the blog itself. I love that about blogging. We come together as a community with no age restrictions. Happy blogging.
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Alice in Readerland14 September, 2013 at 7:42 pm
I’m older than 13, but I’m still a teen and feel the same way a lot of times. In some ways, I think it’s cool that I’m a teen reviewing teen books, but at other times I can feel intimidated by what publishers or authors think if I email them, and I often think “do people really want to talk to some kid?” too….especially when I see reviews that say things like “Well, you know how dumb I was way back at that age” or “teens don’t think” or “teens are so irresponsible.” Sometimes people brush me off and I want to say, “Hey, I’ve had to grow up fast. I don’t have as much life experience as you do and don’t expect to be treated as an equal, but I take things seriously and have been through a lot, so please don’t just brush me off a topic because of my age.” but I don’t say that because I don’t want to sound like I’m bragging. Thankfully, I have met many sweet adult bloggers, and other great teen bloggers like yourself. 🙂 Great post!
Alice @ Alice in Readerland
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Weekly Highlights; Blogoversary Edition | A Daydreamer's Thoughts15 September, 2013 at 9:01 am
[…] There are many challenges in life, but feeling like your age is hindering you is never helpful. This week Lucy talks about how she feels her age has restricted her in some ways while she blogs. It was a great post that I really think you should read. Check it out here. […]
Dad15 September, 2013 at 10:09 am
Brilliant post. The ability to write your thoughts down in such a way and use it as a tool to discuss and help is others is inspirational. I am proud of you now as I always have been. You are what you are and you should never let anybody make you feel inferior. “The only person who can make you feel bad is yourself”. You are fabulous, and your mother and I are very proud of you. Dad.
Cicely15 September, 2013 at 4:20 pm
Even though I’m a bit older than you (17), I still feel like this a lot. I especially felt like this when I first started blogging and everyone else seemed so much older and more mature than me, but as you get older and blog for longer, you do start to feel a bit less self conscious about it. I think that there are a lot more younger bloggers around than there were before, also, which makes it a bit less bad 😉 Plus you definitely don’t write like a 13/14 year old. You write like a much more mature person than me! But it is nice having older friends and stuff in the blogosphere, especially when you’re going through a transitory period or are just having a bad time and you want some advice from people who’ve been through it (who aren’t your parents). I think I’ve just given up trying to be mature now, unless I’m doing a more serious discussion post or something. People don’t seem to mind 😉
But oh my god yes that self consciousness about meeting other bloggers who are older than you and you just rock up with your parents and feeling worried that they really just don’t want to hang out with some random kid who they talk to on the internet. I’m still trying to get over that.
But yeah, I don’t think you have to worry too much about it affecting your pageviews or how people see you or anything! You’re doing AMAZINGLY. Please don’t let it bog you down too much 🙂
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Dan Farmer19 September, 2013 at 11:46 am
First of all, congratulations a very well reasoned article. Now, time to chip in with my two cents…
Sadly, being looked at in terms of you age will be an issue you always have to face. When you’re in you twenties, you’ll be wary of looking foolish to people in their fifties, and when you’re in your fifties you’ll struggle to find ways of communicating with your teenage kids. But then those problems are not isolated to age. Each person is an island separated from other land masses by their wealth or deficit of experience. Age is just one of those things.
However, as a reviewer, your age should not be your concern. In the eyes of a publishing house, you may be the voice of a generation or a marketing bracket, but when critiquing, you should make a point of writing strictly from your own personal experience. Why? Well first of all, it’s honest and will come easiest to you. Secondly, your experience won’t differ all that greatly from many others, and those others will identify with you subconsciously through your reviews. By reviewing honestly, you are helping them make informed decisions about their reading choices, based upon a shared set of values. Yes there will be differences, but on the whole you’ll find people agree. Not only your age but your race, post code and taste in soft drinks will all contribute towards this, yet at no point should you contrive to put these factors at the forefront. Read a book, note your immediate emotional response and write about that. That is the only thing your readers want.
As for reading books not aimed at your age group, do it. When I was 9 I started reading Discworld. At 26, I’m still reading Discworld. There are elements that I enjoyed then, and elements I enjoyed now, despite the fact that the novels are clearly aimed at adults. As for a more recent change, for years I avoided reading comics because of the idea that they are childish, but two years ago put that notion aside and tried some renowned titles. Since then I have encountered some of the most striking and literary story telling I have ever had the pleasure to experience. Do not be constricted by your age. Always seek new experiances. You’ll be surprised what you may find (I hasten to add that advice applies strictly to books. Don’t use me as an excuse the next time you get a suspect piercing or when your teachers catch you smoking behind the English block. That’s all on you, amigo!)
Two Years of Queen of Contemporary! | Queen of ContemporaryQueen of Contemporary20 April, 2014 at 11:16 am
[…] Is Age Just a Number? – I’m so proud of this post. It’s one of the most honest posts I’ve ever written, but I’m so glad I did. Sometimes it’s nice to just write your thoughts down! […]
Catriona20 April, 2014 at 11:54 am
This is SUCH a great post for all those out there that feel they want to start a blog but are too your, thank you for writing this & I’m sorry I only just found it!
I think the points that you make are valid but definitely not something you should worry about. I value your opinion whatever age you are and I think it’s valuable fit everyone to have reviews from people of all ages & walks of life!
I think your writing us very mature and in fact a lot better than a lot of adults writing I’ve seen-thank you again for this post!
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