Plots are different. Dynamic, meditative, multi-layered and straightforward, ornate, and concise. But each genre, and even more so the totality of such a multitude of genres as YA, has characteristic features that make it easy to understand whether a good story is in front of you or not. What must be in the excellent plot of the YA-book?
1. The social problem, which is the primary metaphor that unites all layers of text.
Take a look around, we all live in a world full of contradictions. So let the heroes of the book come face to face with the most relevant of them. Therefore, it is so crucial that the author does not turn away from the current agenda. Read news bulletins on trusted portals and spend time on recent documentaries and platforms highlighting the current social situation in the country and the world. You need to know what the modern young adult breathes, what hurts him, and what he dreams about. Only then will the social semantic layer become a vital part of the plot, and not a tribute to fashion.
2. Difficult questions.
Let the reader try on unexpected roles, change his point of view, and find the most non-banal solutions to harsh situations. Life rarely gives us unambiguous answers; we seek them, but we encounter contradictions, fears, and rejection. Heroes should be in such an environment, even if they live in an elven kingdom. In reality, we really do not like conflicts and try to get out of them soon. But to read about hopeless situations, being safe is a real pleasure. This is especially when the hero finally finds a way out of the impasse, delighting the reader with his luck and courage.
3. An ambiguous hero.
In life, there are no entirely evil or good people, so your characters must be multifaceted and thoughtful. The problems of self-identification, acceptance of oneself and one's body, awareness of a world that cannot be divided only into black and white, so relevant at this age, give the authors fertile ground for developing the most lively and complex characters. Both primary and secondary. You should not miss such an opportunity.
4. Conversation on an equal footing.
Remember that a young reader does not mean stupid. If you are writing for teens, then be at that moment a teenager, with his problems and desires. From the YA-book, most strongly averts a raid of moralization. There is no need to try to impose your opinion on the reader or persistently put it into the characters' speech, emphasizing that only it is the only true one. Leave the hero a place for dialogue, and the air to a reader. Let everyone choose their own point of view. The author's task is to tell the story, and readers will interpret it.
5. A logical plot.
Carried away by the difficulties of the life of young adults, it is easy to lose the thread of the plot. No matter how important the emotional component, remember that no one canceled the logic. Remember the compositional rules of plot construction
- an incident (an event - a trigger that triggers the plot).
- Background (the usual way of life of the characters who changed the incident)
- development (the growth of conflicts and contradictions)
- climax (resolution of the central conflict, which radically changes the life of the heroes)
- the result (what the heroes came to). And all these parts of the plot should be built on causal relationships. No deus ex machinas. Only shooting guns.
6. Food for the mind.
Let this sound corny, but from your book, readers should have an aftertaste of the author's view of the problem that has been revealed in history. The reader cannot be left without discovery - some new knowledge, an unexpected change in meanings, a new facet of an already known topic. Plots are forgotten, the names of heroes and the names of locations are erased from memory, but the semantic core of the story should remain with readers for a long time. Then your book will not be forgotten, they will want to reread it and share it with friends.
And this is the most important thing!