I’d barely unpacked my bags for my first grad school residency when I heard about one of the most revered teachers and mentors in the program, an accomplished horror author. “He’s brutal in his critiques,” an upperclassman informed me, “but if you survive, he’ll help you become a really good writer.” He paused and said, “You’ll never get assigned to him though. He detests Young Adult fiction.”
I ended up with three fabulous mentors who didn’t mind that I wrote YA, but I have to say this upperclassman wasn’t kidding about the horror teacher. On the first day of his class, he had us go around and tell our names and what genre we wrote. When I introduced myself as Lynn Slaughter and announced I wrote young adult fiction, he looked horrified. “Your name is Slaughter, and you write YA? What a total waste of a great name!”
However, that turns out to be not entirely true. My forthcoming YA novel, IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN YOU, is far from a horror story, but it does have its scary moments. The protagonist, a cyberstalked high school advice columnist, puts herself into grave danger trying to solve the murder of her twin. The other day, my editor at Page Street sent me a copy of the cover they were seriously considering using. If I say so myself, I think my last name of “Slaughter” fits right in with its sinister appearance—even if I do write young adult fiction. Here’s the cover. What do you think?