Friday, November 5, 2010

Deciphering the Teenage Mind

Okay, the title of this blog is misleading. There is no deciphering the teenage mind. The things teenagers do don't make any sense. However, if you are writing a YA novel and sometimes wonder how a teen would react to something or what they would say, here are a few ways to get a glimpse into the teenage brain.

Watch 16 and Pregnant/ Teen Mom religiously.

These shows are the epitome of teenage naivete and immaturity. How a 16 year old girl could get pregnant (for the most part on purpose) and think that her equally irresponsible boyfriend will a) want to stay with her for the baby b) suddenly become responsible c) be an excellent, supportive father is the best example I can think of to show the utter lack of common sense teenage girls display. And yet somehow at the end of the show, every girl says "Oh, yeah, I should've waited to have a baby. It's hard."


Read Seventeen magazine. This is what teen girls actually care about: boys, hot boys, flirting with boys, having sex with boys...oh and makeup, clothes and shoes.

Disney Channel is not an accurate representation of normal teens. Normal teens are not secret pop stars, don't have magic powers, and no school sinks that much money on costumes and sets for high school plays . Instead, look at what happens to Disney stars in their private lives. Sexting, naked pictures, eating disorders and cutting, nasty break-ups, now that is realistic.


Watch MTV's True Life and/or Made. Okay, watch anything on MTV. No, watch everything on MTV. The absolute best source for info on teens.