Monday, May 26, 2014

Subgenres: It's All Good

by Lynn Lovegreen

I love chocolate, and my favorite treat for finishing a draft or other milestone is a bar of dark chocolate. But sometimes I’m in the mood for a peanut butter cup, or milk chocolate, or a mocha.  Many of us do the same with our reading habits. There may be one kind of book we read most often, but we like a change now and then. New Adult (NA) romance allows you to do that too.

Most NA books I’ve seen are contemporary, and most of those are set in cities and college campuses. They are great reads, and that setting will be a perennial favorite. But there are emerging subgenres of NA romance that are fun, too. Here are a few examples of novels and novellas just to give you an idea:

Drip Drop Teardrop by Samantha Young (novella)
Persephone's Orchard by Molly Ringle

Worth Her Weight in Gold (Gold Rush Series #1) by Lynn Lovegreen (novella) (Sorry, couldn’t resist!)
Come Back by Melissa Maygrove

So how can these be NA? Because they are true to NA themes.  As the popular site NA Alley states (at, 
“We view New Adult fiction (NA) as a category of literature—meaning, it gives readers expectations, but it does not dictate genre-based criteria. Typically, a novel is considered NA if it encompasses the transition between adolescence and true adulthood. 

Protagonists generally fall between the ages of eighteen and twenty-six, though exceptions may apply. NA characters are often portrayed experiencing: college, living away from home for the first time, military deployment, apprenticeships, a first steady job, a first serious relationship, etc. 

Other terms for NA include: Upper YA, Crossover Fiction, and Mature YA.”

We all fit under that umbrella. In my opinion, we make NA stronger by including a variety of subgenres, whether it be setting, characters or other features that distinguish us. We all care about the same kinds of things, and explore similar themes. As readers try more NA, they will appreciate having more to choose from. So it’s all good. 

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Lynn Lovegreen grew up in Alaska, and still lives there. She taught English for 20 years before retiring to make more time for writing. She enjoys reading, hanging out with friends and family, and hitting targets with a cowboy action shooting club. Her young adult historical romances are set in the Alaska Gold Rush, a great time for drama, romance, and independent characters.

See her website at You can also find her on Facebook, Tumblr, and Pinterest.


  1. Thanks for hosting me, Winsome and Wild! :-)

    1. We're pleased to have you contribute, Lynn! A big thank you, to you! ;)

      I also agree that NA will be made stronger if it keeps evolving. The more subgenres the better!

  2. Love this post, Lynn. Like you, I have a taste for something different every month or week- or day! Subgenres are essential and make the NA category so much better. Otherwise we'd be reading the same book over and over.