The Emergence of a New Audience


I’m discovering a new audience for my books: middle and high schoolers. More and more I receive messages from teens and tweens saying they read one of my books and loved it, can’t wait to read more. I find this interesting. And it seems this fact finds me interesting. In the past week I’ve received two invitations to talk to middle schoolers in my area.

And this Saturday I’ll be taking part in the Book ‘Em for Literacy Book Fair at Kate Collins Middle School in Waynesboro, VA. If you live in the area, why not stop by? The fair is 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. I’ll be among 70+ other authors signing and selling books. A portion of all proceeds will go toward literacy programs in the area. A worthy cause.

The Book ‘Em Foundation’s purpose is to raise awareness of the link that exists between high illiteracy rates and high crime rates, increase literacy rates, and decrease crime rates.

So this is interesting but makes total sense. The police officer who organizes the book fair asked me if I thought my books were appropriate for middle schoolers. When I balked (simply because of the suspenseful and intense nature of my books) he reminded me that middle schoolers are already reading Stephen King. Hey, if they’re reading King they can definately handle Dellosso.

That got me thinking. Teens and tweens are really into the whole suspense/horror genre right now and I have that to offer that’s clean, minus the swearing, sex, and gratuitous gore and all about a positive, moral message. It’s perfect for that age range looking for my type of fiction. Why didn’t I realize this before?

New doors open all the time.

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About mikedellosso

Mike Dellosso is an author of wide-eyed suspense. He writes stories that not only entertain but enlighten.

Posted on October 14, 2010, in Christian Fiction, Writing Life and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. As a Christian, that’s the exact same reason I (and my sister) watch a lot of Disney programs – it’s clean comedy minus the swearing, sex etc…
    Great that a lot of younger folk out there are reading too 🙂

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  2. Hi Mike, I’m happy for you – and you’re right: God has opened a new and huge door for you. The younger generation is getting more and more into sci-fi, fantasy, and horror now (more so than in mine, what with the boom of Harry Potter and Twilight) – and this is an audience that the church must address. You’re a representative of Christ in a land with a potentially huge harvest. 🙂 Go for it!

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  3. Great opening for you, and the teens need good, clean novels! It can help counteract Twilight and Harry Potter. I have a niece into Twilight. This would be great–and learn the truth at the same time! But don’t forget about us ‘oldies!’

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  4. Mike, my highschool son reads all of your stuff – and likes it! I think your books are a natural fit for teens!

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  5. Excellent point Mike – you can offer them the chills and fun without all the stuff that is probably best left to older folks. That being said, I do remember meeting Stephen King in person when I was in middle school and being very inspired by his passion and creativity.

    BTW – I am only a couple hours drive from Waynesboro – small world! Unfortunately I’ve already got a commitment on Saturday otherwise I’d love to come by and meet you in person. Good luck with the new audience!

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  6. Good stuff, Mike. Perhaps for each person that buys a book or more from you, you can then mention a few of your favorite Christian horror writers as people they can read too in a “if you like my books” kind of thing to help further the spread of the growing genre. Not sure if that’s something you’re comfortable with, so it’s just a suggestion. Take it or leave it. ; )

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  7. Mike, this is great…I definitely believe you provide great reading material for this age group!

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