I've just finished writing the first of a three book of the young adult fantasy and am now in a quandary about what to do with it. In order to send it to a mainstream publisher I need to acquire an agent and they are as difficult to find as a publisher.
This leaves me with two alternatives: one - self publish or two - offer it to a digital first publisher.
I decided to investigate both routes in my usual haphazard, nonscientific way. My research is as follows.
There are very few digital first publishers still running a young adult line. The ones that do I checked the Amazon rankings of their books and they were all far higher than for my Regency romances. This puzzled me - I thought teenagers were buying more books and that YA was a growing market.
I browsed various forums and message boards and to my astonishment most seem to be saying that teenagers, in fact, have not embraced the digital reader. They prefer to read print books and Smart phones/iPad etc are used for communication and game play - not reading. It is adults that are reading on the Kindle not teenagers.
I also read in many places that those that are buying for digital readers in this genre are mostly adults who like reading crossover fiction.
I know that Hunger Games, Twilight, Harry Potter and Amanda Hockings's books have sold in their millions but they seem to be the exceptions.
The general consensus of opinion is that YA digital fiction is not selling well enough for the publishers to continue stocking them.
If this is true then I might as well self publish or put the book to one side until things improve.
What do you think? Do teenagers prefer print books to digital? Are the main buyers for YA e-books adults?
Looking forward to hearing your opinion.