When I wrote Graveminder, I was caught off-guard by the surge of questions on "switching" from YA to adult. I was perplexed. I never set out to be a young adult writer initially--or an adult writer or a fantasy writer or... well, any type of writer. I simply write.
Wicked Lovely turned out to be a teen novel (except for the countries where it's published as an adult novel). Graveminder turned out to be an adult novel (except that teens read it, too), and the book I'm working on now, Loki's Wolves, is a children's novel. I don't have any desire to limit myself to one category. What I want is to tell stories.
Characters arrive in my head, and the story that evolves from their issues or interests is what matter to me. When I'm writing, I don't think about editors, agents, readers: my whole attention is on my characters. Being true to the characters' stories and voices determines whether there will be cussing, sex, drama, violence, angst, murder or any number of things. Graveminder has at its center a mortician, a commitment-phobe and a dead teenager. By definition, there's not much cussing because these aren't characters who'd speak like that. Carnival of Souls has more angst and cussing because it's appropriate for those characters. The label stamped on the covers of my books is something that happens after the book is written, not as part of the writing process.
Graveminder is an adult book because the characters have concerns that adults have--jobs, marriage, settling into a long-term career. That, to me, is the distinguishing line between the stories I write; the characters' and their journeys are what determine the rest. My job is simply to stay as true to those journeys as possible. --Melissa Marr, author of Graveminder and the Wicked Lovely series