What is ‘clean’ fiction?
I want to thank Nancy for having me on her blog today! Today is a big day for me, a one day blog blitz (13 blogs) to get the word out about my new book, SAINT SLOAN.
Have you ever heard of ‘clean’ fiction? There is a bit of a debate when it comes to the difference between clean and sweet. I think the answer depends on who you talk to. I consider myself a ‘clean’ author (and not just because I take a bath every night… bad, bad joke). I don’t put swear words or ‘pink parts’ in my novels. They definitely deal with social issues and don’t hold back on the storyline, but they aren’t littered with bad words or ‘dirty’ things.
Personally, they are the kinds of books I like to read.
I think you can get your point across without swearing. What do you do if your characters cuss? Well, I’ve had that issue before. There was a scene in my first book CROSSING THE DEEP where the character HAD to cuss (there was no way around it). I just wrote he shouted an expletive into the woods. That got the point across and I didn’t have to spell it out for people (yay on both counts).
Are you a fan of ‘clean’ fiction? If you are, I invite you to check out my books. They deal with difficult issues, but in respectful ways.
Want to know what clean/YA fiction actually is? Here’s an excerpt from SAINT SLOAN
“That’s a good question.” Aaron’s voice boomed from the
kitchen entryway. Sloan jumped when she heard it. Ray said he
slept until ten, and it was barely eight. Friday night she had been so
appreciative of him. Now, thanks to the testimonies of others, she
was nervous to see him.
He looked tired with messy hair, wrinkled navy blue work
pants, and a day‑old beard. Despite herself, she couldn’t take her
eyes off him, specifically his lack of a shirt. Aaron had his arms
crossed over his well‑built chest and leaned on the door facing.
“Why did you tell Miss Sloan to stay away from me, brother?”
Sloan tore her eyes away from Aaron’s biceps in time to see
Ray lean back in his chair and cross his arms as well, almost as if
accepting a challenge. “Because, brother, for all of your good
qualities, you can still be a jerk sometimes.”
“Runs in the family.” Aaron smirked as he walked into the
room and grabbed a paper plate. He piled the last remaining pieces
of pizza on it and got a soda from the fridge. He turned a seat
around and sat at the head of the table next to Sloan, putting her
smack dab in the middle of them. “What ya working on?”
Sloan forced her eyes to stay on his and not venture down
his very long, very muscular, very kissable…“Biology,” she said
quickly. “We’re studying biology.” Don’t look at his neck… don’t look
at his neck.
“Biology. Not chemistry.” He winked at his brother, who
“What are you doing up so early?”
“Why? Have a special evening planned with your lady
friend here?” Aaron grinned at Sloan.
“Not if you count homework as fun.”
“I don’t. That’s why I dropped out.”
“You dropped out?” Sloan asked before she could stop
Aaron wiped his mouth with a paper towel and narrowed
his eyes. “Kinda had to after Ma left. Got my GED and never
looked back. I guess Ray told you the whole sordid affair.”
“A lot of it, I guess. I’m sorry she left you like that.”
“Don’t be. It was the best thing she’d ever done for us, right,
Ray? To answer your question, brother, I have to go into work early
tonight, nine instead of eleven. At least it’s overtime. Money.”
“I didn’t know,” Ray said.
Aaron shrugged. “I didn’t tell. But it worked out well. I got
to spend time with my little brother and his new woman.”
“I’m not his woman,” Sloan said, then tried to backtrack. “I
mean, I don’t mean that I wouldn’t like to be or there is something
wrong with him… but we just… met… again… and….”
Aaron laughed and fell back in his chair. “I’m kidding, girl.
Don’t read so much into it.”
Her phone vibrated on the table, and Sloan panicked. “Oh,
It was her mom! She’d forgotten to text her. Sloan prayed
with everything she had that her mom hadn’t already called the
police. Fine, mom. Sorry. Got carried away talking. Be home soon.
“Your mom didn’t call the cops, I hope,” Ray said.
“The cops? You use the same line on him that you did on
me?” Aaron scoffed with his mouth full of pizza. “Man, you’re
“Safety first,” Sloan said before her phone vibrated again.
Okay. If you’re sure.
She let out a calming breath and put the phone back on the
table. “Phew. Mom’s okay with all of this, but I really need to get
home. Ray, we got everything finished we intended to do tonight,
“Right. We got the outline done. Now all we have to do is
finish writing the blasted thing.”
“Fun times.” Sloan smiled and put her book back into her
backpack. Once that was done, she grabbed her phone to text her
mom again. “I’ll tell my mom to come pick me up on her way
home. It shouldn’t be too much longer.”
“Why? I’m going that way,” Aaron spoke up as he walked to
the trash can with his plate. “I have to be at work at nine anyway.
Why don’t I drop you off?”
“I can drive her.” Ray sounded almost defensive.
“That would be silly, Ray. Her house is on my way to work.
It only makes sense for me to take her… home.” Aaron glared at
Ray, and Ray did the same, with Sloan stuck between them.
“It’s fine, Ray. Really. It’s not like he hasn’t driven me home
before,” Sloan said to break the tension. Truthfully, she’d rather
ride home with Ray but didn’t want to be a burden to him.
“She’s sure. Come on, my dear.” Aaron stood behind her
seat and helped her up. The gesture would have been gentlemanly,
even romantic, if he wasn’t doing it just to aggravate Ray. “Don’t
stay up too late, little brother. Remember, it’s a school night.”
Aaron ruffled Ray’s hair before Ray smacked his hand away.
“Be careful,” Ray said slowly.
“I will,” he said, helping Sloan get her backpack on.
“Precious cargo and all.”
“Thanks for everything, Ray.” Sloan smiled and hoped he
understood how much she meant it. “Supper was delicious.”
“You should see what he can do with spaghetti,” Aaron said
from behind her.
“I’m not lying. It’s really good. Maybe you can come back
and try it some time.”
“I’d like that,” Sloan said, and she meant it. Except for a few
awkward moments, she’d had a good time.
“Tomorrow at school we’ll pick another day for you to come
over, if you want,” Ray said as he cleaned up his and Sloan’s plates.
“It’s a date then,” Aaron clapped from the hallway. “Come
on, princess. I’ve got to get a shirt on. Let’s get you home.”
Sloan followed Aaron to the hall and tuned around to Ray.
He was watching her from the sink and looked sad to see her go.
She wondered if it was more because she was going home or
because she was going with Aaron. Sibling rivalry didn’t seem fun,
not that she would know anything about it. She was an only child.
Taking a deep breath, she walked back to Ray, stood on her
tiptoes, and kissed him on the cheek. “Thanks for supper.”
When she leaned away, he smiled and peeked over her head
toward the hallway.
She didn’t have to look to know Aaron was there. Aaron
may have won round one (taking her home), but Ray won round
two (the first kiss). “You’re welcome. See ya at school tomorrow.”
Want to read more? Buy it for $2.99 from any of the links below:
BARNES AND NOBLE: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/saint-sloan-kelly-martin/1114723748?ean=2940016377308
ASTRAEA PRESS: http://www.astraeapress.com/#!/~/product/category=662245&id=20839143
Thank you so much for having me here today!
~Kelly Martin is a best selling author of young adult fiction. She has two books: Grace Award nominee CROSSING THE DEEP and Amazon Best selling in Teen/Religion SAINT SLOAN. She has several short stories published and loves to write ‘twitter fiction’ when she’s bored. Kelly loves God, is addicted to chocolate, and would rather write than sleep.
You can find her on twitter (she tweets a lot): @martieKay
You can find my author page (blog tour central): at www.kellymartinstories.com
Thank you, Kelly, for stopping by!