For a while, I’ve been itching to write a post on what it is like on being a teen influencer. My experiences have been really different compared from what I’ve seen that adult influencers go through. Being a teen is harder with the community built against them.
YA Isn’t Directed Towards Teens:
I’m not sure if you’ve realized this, but YA hasn’t been directed towards teens anymore. I could barely list a handful of authentic, real teenagers in books. Guess where the money is at-Adults. Who has jobs and could afford to buy books-Adults. Adults are the profit. They have a better voice in the community than anyone else.
YA hasn’t been directed because adults control the genre. If an (adult) reviewer complains about how stupid the book is because the teen protagonist did something stupid, but a teen reviewer talks about the book and how much they did it. Who are you going to believe? The adult reviewer most likely.
Adult influencers have most of the power. They’re able to fit in the community a little easier. Authors most likely listen to them more, because of the power they have. I could see a lot more adult influencers than teenagers in general.
Teen influencers are on a different level. We’re at a disadvantage already because we can’t give the publishers profit. We don’t have jobs, and if we’re lucky and we do, we have to work a certain amount of hours due to legal reasons. Even if we do a lot of things than the adult influencer, we’re still invisible.
The gap of adult readers thinking they know what is best for YA, when no one wants to listen to the TEEN readers. I’m still surprised to see books with sex scenes in them (fade to black type) in books instead of adult readers ranting about teenagers are not doing this sort of things.
It’s the same discourse on the reason why we can’t see teen influencers too much. It’s mainly the reason why authors think that they’re isn’t much teens on social media. We’re there, but no one pays attention to us too much.
Teens have the most limited resources there is. I know I do, and possibly others. We don’t have the means of buying books or any supplies we need for bookstagram or anything like that. We have to rely on the library if we’re lucky that we have access to one, or save up to even buy a book.
Buying a book is expensive especially if it isn’t second hand. I’m in a privileged spot to where I have access to a library and it’s nearby which is where I get my books, but not everyone has it. They don’t have the access and it’s harder getting a new release than something that is considered a classic I’m guessing.
Balancing School Amongst other things:
School and having extracurricular activities is possibly one of the hardest thing. School last for 7 hours, than you have the tutoring, sports or theater with after school and that could last 2+ hours after school. Than there is homework, there is so much things that teens are involved with at school that it gets to blog a little challenging.
I’m one of the very few lucky ones that can blog everyday, and have posts up because there isn’t much things I’m interested in especially right now during this pandemic. I like playing my instrument and that does take a little bit when there’s actual school and it’s the fall.
Balancing school and homework is hard. There’s only so much things teens can do, and the bookish community often comes last because school work and mental health is important.
Can’t Receive ARCs:
Getting ARCs is probably one of the important things to receive, because you can create buzz around it. Teens, however, is a little more difficult to get ARCs to hype the books are. Edelweiss is probably the most reasonable, but it’s one of the hardest things. I don’t have much luck on that site which is why I use Netgalley.
Netgalley is probably a good site, but the age thing puts a lot of readers off and the whole International problem. I use it despite not being over 18-but frankly, I really doubt that readers wait to sign up for things of how old you are. But getting physical ARCs, but be nice. I’d kill to get a physical ARC of any YA book that hasn’t been out yet, and a lot of readers want to read it.
Giveaways are a problem:
Teens can’t do giveaways for mostly because they are not 18. Goodreads is out of the option because you have to be over 18, and live in the United States. Some giveaways requires you to be 18 to enter and there really isn’t an option to ask a parent’s permission.
What are your experiences of being a teen influencer? Do you face any hardships? Have anything to point out? Tell me in the comments!
About the Blogger:
Lori is an advocate for all things diverse to help those who are in the margins. She loves reading, but music holds a dear place in her heart. She is a teenager in high school, a feminist, and is in the LGBTQ+ community. Uses she/her or they/them pronouns 🌈