Saturday, February 12, 2011

Poll: How Old Are YA Bloggers?

When I started becoming active in the YA blogging community, I was surprised that most of big blogs were written by people in their 20s - think The Story Siren, Persnickety Snark, GreenBeanTeenQueen, StephSuReads, and more. Some of these people are teachers or librarians, but others are just adults who love YA.

As I've become completely immersed obsessed with blogging, I've discovered many more YA book blogs. There are many excellent blogs written by teens and even pre-teens (Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf, Reading Vacation, The Book Scout, etc. They read and write far better than I did at that age. Still, I think most blogs are written by people in their 20s or beyond.

Why do you think this is?

Here are some of my thoughts:
  1. Teenagers are busy with school, homework, extracurricular activities, and afternoon jobs
  2. Teenagers tend to use IM and Facebook more than other social media (my conjecture - correct me if I'm wrong)
  3. Most teenagers don't have the discipline or writing skills to keep up a blog (I know this is not universally true, but think it is true for many)
  4. People in their 20s+ don't have real-life peers who read YA books, so need to find another outlet to share their reading love
  5. People in their 20s+ probably already read a lot of blogs and have friends who blog, so it makes sense to start their own
  6. People in their 20s+ are not quite as afraid to market their blog and to reach out to authors or publishers for interviews, guest posts, giveaways, etc.
Poll: If you're a predominantly YA blogger, how old are you? If you don't want to tell me exactly how old you are, give me a decade.

Post your answer in the comments. I'd also love to hear why you think YA bloggers tend to be older.

I'll start...I am 29 years old. I will be 30 in September. I think I'll allow myself to turn 30 once, and then I'll go back to being 29 for a few years.

57 comments :

  1. I'm 26. I was a high school English/Spanish teacher for a few years and now I work with teens in a public library. But even if I didn't work with teenagers, I'd read YA for fun! I think a lot of your observations make sense. In high school I didn't read a lot for fun because I devoted all my free time to homework, dance lessons, dance team, and other extracurriculars. When I had free time I wanted to hang out with friends or talk to them online! I think a lot of us who blog about YA in our 20s didn't really discover YA until we were older, too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm 17. Your reasoning makes a lot of sense-- I don't really fit into the norm of teenagers (or what's considered the norm). I don't have a job, I don't participate in extracurriculars through school, but I'm active in music and photography, so there's more time for me to do things like blogging than if I was involved in a sport or theater.
    As for Facebook and IM, yeah, that's pretty spot on. I can't really speak for the 20+ conjectures, but they still sound pretty accurate.
    Interesting blog post and have a lovely weekend!

    Jude

    ReplyDelete
  3. I turned 30 on 1/30. I made my blog just for fun. As a way for friends to keep up with what I read, and to see if maybe they would want to read something I've read. I just recently got back into reading, now that all my kids are in school, and am totally hooked on YA! They didn't have books like these when I was a teen. :o)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm 13. I'll be 14 in September. (Yay September b-days!)
    Your points make sense.
    Not a lot of the teens I know like to read. Maybe, including me, there are about four bookworms in my entire grade. And none are as obsessed as me. Plus blogs are considered stupid, so that might play a role :P

    ReplyDelete
  5. I am 29... July = 30. Blech.

    I am a YA Librarian, so it almost makes sense to blog about what I'm reading. It kinda helps in my work. I can go back and remember what I thought about a certain book so I can recommend them to the right people. There are a few teens at my library who keep up with my blog as well - which makes it all more worthwhile :).

    I think most of your ideas are correct. In high school, I didn't read. At all. Well, except for a few things - like when Harry Potter first started. But otherwise I was all extracurricular or work, all the time.

    Nice post - something to think about!

    ReplyDelete
  6. My sister and I are 22 and 26. We never read in high school, so reading YA now is so much fun!

    This is one big reason for us:

    4.People in their 20s+ don't have real-life peers who read YA books, so need to find another outlet to share their reading love

    ReplyDelete
  7. I just turned 60 last August. I have been a school media specialist working with children and young adults in Minnesota for the past 35 years. I got into blogging to find a group of enthusiastic readers and writers. I read a lot of YAs so that I have something to talk about with my students. Of course I read a lot of other books too that may or may not be enjoyed by YAs too.

    I think you are correct in your perceived demographics. I am always pleasantly surprised when I find out that a young adult is blogging. I have a bunch of students who are readers but not many who are writers.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm 20 and I'll be 21 in April! Woot!haha

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm 13, almost 14. And I'm so busy with homework and extra things like sports, it is amazing that I even find time to blog. I have to do all my posts and reviews on the weekends, otherwise I probably couldn't blog. As for Facebook and IM, I don't really use those...which is a probably a really good thing! Interesting Poll!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'm 22 and have been reading and blogging YA since high school, in high school I actually had a lot of time to blog even with school and extracurriculars, but in college I had to stop. Now that I am doing my masters (in taxation mind you) I really don't have time, but I make time since it is something I really enjoy!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I was 31 when I started my blog last year. I started blogging to keep track of reading challenges and share reviews. I'm a librarian and I work with adults and teens. When I was a teen, blogging didn't exist because most people didn't have Internet access. I was an 18 year old college freshman (1996) when I learned how to use the Internet and e-mail! We had dial up :)

    Back then I read mostly books for adults (Agatha Christie, John Grisham, etc.) There wasn't the huge selection of YA fiction that there is today. I didn't start reading YA again until I was out of college and finally picked up Harry Potter. I then took a class on YA services where I had to read a lot of YA fiction. I read Twilight, books by Sarah Dessen, and Laurie Halse Anderson, to name a few. By the time that class was done, I was hooked on YA fiction!

    I think it is great when I see teens blogging to share their love of books and reading. I also enjoy seeing people of all ages blogging about books. It is a great community we have here.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'm 23 and I started my blog for several of the reasons you stated but namely 4 and 6. Mostly 6 actually. I want to be an author and its recommended that you should try and build a following on social networks prior to becoming an author. I didn't expect to fall in love with blogging the way I did!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I just turned 27 in December. Looking back at my high school years, I don't recall a lot of people reading for entertainment. I have always, but only a handful of my friends were readers back then!

    I think something that might also deter teens or pre-teens from starting a blog is parental internet control. My cousins are blocked from almost every website or activity that includes any inkling of personal information because their parents are afraid of who might see their info, even if it's under an alias.

    I like 4 and 6 on your list. Meeting new people in your 20's after college is hard, so I think a lot of us get into blogging as another outlet to make new friends, even if we never meet in person!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'm 22, I started blogging when I was in high school but those were personal posts. I didn't really start book blog until I was about 18 or 19 and even then i didn't get serious until last year when I was 21. I just kept a blog because it was cool and because I needed to keep track of the books I read.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I turned 16 on the 31st January, and I have to say I agree with your points on why actually YA's don't yap on about YA books. I am always pretty busy, but I always try to make SOME time on a weekday, and devote a few hours each week to blog things. I use both Facebook and IM, and particularly on Facebook it is obvious why there are less YA bloggers.... loads of people in my year don't read, but I know a lot that do, just that they keep their thoughts to themselves. Personally, I only talk to people about books who I know like books too :P

    ReplyDelete
  16. I'm fourteen and will be fifteen in March. I think your points are pretty accurate. As for me though, I don't do much. I play sports in the fall (I'm not sureif I will again) and I do drama club through school. Now I have plenty of time to blog and read. Not many people in my school like to read as much as I do, and some people say they hate it! Its Tragic! I don't use facebook or IM, thought I do have twitter, which goes along with my blogging. Blogging is something I enjoy, but I'm not the average teen and I think most others really don't have time.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm 26 and will be 27 in March. My degree has nothing to do with literature or writing I just love to read. I'm always enjoyed reading different types of books, but there is something about YA books that pull me in. About 4 years ago I got two of my best friends to start reading YA novels too. Now they love them. In fact one of them works at a book store and started a YA book club there. Her, I and one other mother are the only adults but it's great to hear not only their point of view but also the teens POV.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'm 19 turning 20 on February 28, and I agree on most of your points. I'm not currently working or have any extracurriculars but my time is mostly taken up by keeping up with school readings/studying/homework. I wish I could read and blog everyday but it gets hard to keep up with both it and school.
    I love discussing and recommending books I've read but no one really shared that passion with me. Hence the blog!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I'm 26 and a YA librarian, which is why I blog and love YA lit so much. In order to get people in the library, I have to know my collection well. I think it's a combination of the things you wrote about-the audience we work with, how we can easily relate to the protagonist's plights and personalities.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm 22, I read YA mostly because i just enjoy the style of writing and the type of books that come out. I work in a public library and run a teen book group, so need to read a lot to keep up with them and lead discussions. But i mostly read them because I enjoy them.
    PLus I'm still young at heart :P

    ReplyDelete
  21. I'm dangerously close to 50 and feel like a grandma most of the time in this community. But I'm having fun, and I like YA. What can I say?

    ReplyDelete
  22. I'm only 13. :)
    I agree with everything you said too. We are VERY busy with homework activities, etc.
    However blogging has made my life so much more fun and interactive, and I love it to pieces(:

    ReplyDelete
  23. l am 18, 19 in April!
    I have always read little bits but in the past year constantly read now!
    l think school is a big reason people won't do blogs, l know work takes up a lot of time but school children may not find it fun to write blogs after being at school all day!

    ReplyDelete
  24. I'm 25. I think most of your insights are accurate, but I question the idea that high school students don't have time. It's not that I don't think they don't have time, but when it comes down to it, everyone has 24 hours in their day, and just because people like myself aren't in high school anymore doesn't mean we have insane amounts of free time on our hands.

    In high school, I worked, I was in a couple of extracurriculars (admittedly, they didn't do as much as others, but they did stuff), and I worked part-time (only for about a year). After school, I read and studied. On weekends, if I wasn't working (when I had a job), I studied and hung out with friends and read. Blogging didn't really exist at the time (that's not to say it wasn't around, because I'm sure it was, but Facebook, Myspace and Twitter weren't, and I had no idea what blogging was when I was in high school--I don't think any of us did).

    Now, I work full-time. I read a lot during the week, mostly during my breaks and lunch hour, and sometimes when I come home at night. I don't do nearly as much reading on weekends as I do during the week, because I do other things: play tennis, work out (well, I work out during the week, too, but whatever), meet up with friends for lunch, coffee, dinner, or whatever we feel like doing, write, etc. And of course, I also blog during the week and on weekends. So in the end, I do just as much as a high school student does, it's just that my activities are different. I'm sure a lot of people in their 20s who are YA bloggers would say the same thing.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Teen blogger here! On the school thing; that's the reason I only blog three times a week, and two of those times are on the weekends. (Sun, Tues, Fri.) I'm a mid-90's baby, myself.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Hey there, It's Melina from Reading Vacation. I think I'm the youngest one around since I'm eleven. I have been blogging for nearly a year now with no end in site. Reading is my hobby, so blogging is just an extension of that. Yes, I have a lot of homework and projects for school, but I make time for reading and blogging too. I have to say that blogging has helped me to improve my organization skills. I keep a planner and a spreadsheet to keep track of it all.

    PS Your blog is beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I'm 22 but your description of teenagers fits me so much better than your description of 20-something bloggers. I'm pretty young at heart though.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I'm 28 soon to be 29 in March:) I know if I was still in high school or college, I definitely wouldn't have time to blog, it's only now that I work from home and am able to make time to read and write the reviews that I can keep up with something like this! Plus, I had so much assigned reading while in school that reading for fun never really crossed my mind. I just wanted time off from schoolwork in general, and that including reading of any sort:)

    ReplyDelete
  29. Lots of March birthdays! I, too, will be getting older next month, I'll be 24. I started a blog to kind of help with my professional development—I want to work with teens in a public library when i graduate with my MLS from Simmons in 2012. I agree with your reasoning too.

    Kelly, I actually think those in school might actually have less time than some full-time workers. I remember when I was in high school and college that when I wasn't in the musical or playing sports, I had to work on my homework; that takes up a lot of time. And then when you get your free time, there just might be enough time to read and that's it. No energy to bother writing about it.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I'm 22, 23 in April, and I've been blogging for the past couple years. I read a fair bit as a kid and early teens, then mid/late teens I started reading a lot, and around 19 it was pretty much all I did and I wound up talking about books on my blog because I didn't have anyone around me to talk to about them!

    ReplyDelete
  31. You're right about most (going off all your commenters) bloggers being in their 20's. You have a lot of 30 somethings too. I notice you don't have any 40 somethings though ... *cough* like me =)

    ReplyDelete
  32. I am 23 and proud to be a book blogger that's going to be a published author one day who do stil blog untill death :D

    ReplyDelete
  33. I'm 35 and proud to love blogging about YA books! I think YA books feature just as interesting characters and stories as adult books. In my opinion, they are often better! I actually have a lot of time on my hands because I'm unemployed. If I had a full-time job, I don't know how I would juggle blogging. But once I do get a job (crossing my fingers) I will work it out. I love blogging and will never abandon it. I might not post as much. If I were a teenager, I don't think I would have the discipline or the writing skills I do now. However, I'm thinking of my teen self. I feel blogging as an adult is just as hard as being a teen blogger. Especially if the adult has kids, a spouse, work, school, and other activities. Look at the authors who blog! I commend those who do it all, including fitting reading a book into their hectic schedules!

    ReplyDelete
  34. I'm 23-24 in April. I started my blog just to share what I've been reading, and what I thought about whatever book. I wonder if most high school kids would see a blog as work, and therefor be uninterested in trying it out. Blogging does take up a lot of time. I am a 3rd year university student who up until recently was working 20-25 hours a week. I barely had time to eat never mind blog. But it is important to me, and I love doing it, that I make time.

    ReplyDelete
  35. I'll be 33 in April. I started blogging when I was 29. I started a website when I was 18, but back then, it had nothing to do with books because I didn't read. I've always loved social media and the Internet. About a year ago, my blog evolved into predominantly a book blog. But, because of school and work, I do have as much time to read as I'd like.

    I'm not sure why bloggers tend to be older. Most of the blogs I've been exposed to where "family" blogs so I understand why they're older. But, as far as few teenage blogs, my guess would be that they'd rather spend their time with their friends than online talking about books.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Early teens...I dont really do much on my blog though regularly...homework takes up so much time!

    ReplyDelete
  37. I'm 19. It's definitely also a lot harder to maintain a book blog once I started college. It's tough to find time to read books for fun on top of the pages and pages I have to read for my classes!

    ReplyDelete
  38. I'm 25 and yes, one of the main reasons why I started blogging was because I don't have real life friends who I could talk to about books.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Between 13 and 19. So, in my teens.

    ReplyDelete
  40. I just turned 30. I have always been a very passionate reader, but I found that being a part of a once-a-month book club didn't do much for me. Plus, some the current adult fiction that they always choose was a bit boring compared to the YA I would pick up. Lo and behold, the online blogging community was a saving grace. Plus, I used to be a reporter, so blogging about books satisfies that writing itch I get from time-to-time. I think we tend to older because we really need an outlet to discuss literature - we used to have it in HS and college, but as we get older that community disappears. So, we found one for ourselves online :)

    ReplyDelete
  41. I'm in the teens. Therefore, I'm a teen blogger! :D I usually don't have a lot of time so I queue most of my posts. But this semester, I happen to have more time than usual so I get to comment, and plan future posts, etc. Despite that, I think blogging about books has opened my eyes and helped me get in contact with so many other people. I've become a part of a fantastic community, which I've grown to love. It feels like I belong here too, you know? ;)

    ReplyDelete
  42. I'm 14 :)
    I can totally see your points, seeing as I browse FB a lot and also have two IM accounts (though I rarely use them: if someone needs me, they text, call, or email). I also help out with an online forum whole juggling school and actually reading, so I'm pretty busy. I like it though! I'm a new blogger and I love that I can finally vent about books to people who actually care (I haven't ever met a person in real l who reads as many books as I do). I'm a relatively new blogger and I'm always excited to see people actually visit my blog, though I do suck at networking.

    Sometimes I'm really busy but I manage to post at least once a week. It's something I like so I'm willing to work for it. I also think that's a part of what makes my blog unique: my age means a different perspective.

    Anyway, sorry, that was a bit long.

    -P.E.

    ReplyDelete
  43. I'm 14, 15 in April. I actually have a lot of time to blog since I don't really have friends I hang out with after school and I also don't have much homework since I have study hall. I am on the junior high basketball team though and we have 2 and 1/2 hour practices after school so that's about thirteen hours gone that I could use for blogging. Thank god basketball season's almost over though, it gets really tiring with all that running and less reading time:P
    -Danna

    ReplyDelete
  44. I'm 20 turning in a few months 21! I'm a pre-pharmacy student and my schedule is packed! It's hard to find time to read and blog and the main reason I started blogging was because non of my friends liked reading.

    ReplyDelete
  45. I'm 27.
    I agree with your thoughts, your 4th point is particularly relevant to me.
    I enjoyed reading a lot as a teenager but once I started university and discovered how much I had to read for study the last thing I wanted to do in my free time was read. That changed when the Twilight movie came out. I enjoyed the movie so much that I picked up the books. I've been a little obsessed with YA novels ever since.

    ReplyDelete
  46. I'm 22 and a few of my online friends were book bloggers before I decided to join the book blogging world a year ago. I was still in university when I joined, and not working so when not doing school work I had plenty of time. I was living in a dorm and far away from home. I wasn't all that serious about blogging though and didn't know what my goals were yet so I didn't do much in terms of blogging. Now though I'm socializing a lot more with other bloggers and the traffic on my blog has increased ^_^. Now I'm working though so I have trouble being consistent with my posts but I'm getting better. I enjoyed reading a lot as a teenager too but back then blogs were pretty new, and as you say I was more focused on social networks like Hi5 "(I wonder if that's still around). I didn't even know that book blogs existed until I was in university.

    ReplyDelete
  47. I'm 19. I'll be 20 in June so I've got a few months left of my teen years, which is kind of sad to me, but I'm starting to get excited. I have been an avid reader my entire life so when I found out about the world of book blogging I knew I couldn't pass it up, and just a month ago I started my own book blog. I'd really love to be able to meet fellow book bloggers or get to talk to any, but for now I'm just going it alone and trying my best to make my blog fun and enjoyable.

    Chelsea @ Rand0m Girl

    ReplyDelete
  48. I'm 18- and you're right, a teenager's life is busy and I am definitely not able to keep track of my blog as well as I'd like. But I know that I'll continue with my blog into my 20s and 30s just because reading is such a huge part of my life!

    Jane
    janestoryblog.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  49. I just turned 28 last month. And I am seriously considering stealing a page from your book and going back to 29 if I find I don't like 30.

    I've always been a reader. Always carried a book in my backpack/purse. When I turned 25 I figured I should make the switch to "adult" books and read things more age appropriate. But I found I was constantly annoyed with the author's attempts at making things sound overly smart just to appeal to "their generation." I missed the concise nature and to-the-point pace of most YA books, so I switched back.

    While I do read adult fiction, the majority of my books are YA and I figured I'd start a blog so I could keep track of the books I'd read. Now I'm working on my first YA novel with a friend which we hope to have published in late 2012/early 2013. I love this genre and the demographic it speaks to.

    ReplyDelete
  50. I am 12, but I see what you mean: I am 1 of about 2 bookworms in the entire year!

    ReplyDelete
  51. I started when I was 20 years old and I'm 21 now :D

    ReplyDelete
  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  53. I do agree with you about how teenagers don't have the time or discipline, but I actually am one that does. I ballance reading and blogging around my extracurricular activities, sports, school, church, etc. while it does get hard sometimes, I still keep up blogging because I love it, and need an outlet for my fangirling because my friends aren't such big book readers as I am

    ReplyDelete

I love comments. I appreciate every one! Thank you in advance.

This blog is now an award free zone. I just don't have time to pass on the awards as they deserve.

 
Template: Blog Designs by Sheila