I am wrestling with my teen characters, it appears. The book is set in 1976 in North London and involves a bunch of sixteen year olds starting a band.
Being a sensible fellow, I am basing it on me at sixteen in the 1970s. I swore, got angry, wrestled with contentious issues and was a pain. And I also swore. Did I say that? I REALLY SWORE!
Warning: Contains Swearing.
When I wrote The Stink, which is set in North London in the seventies, I really couldn't tell a tale about people living then without confronting the political climate of the time. I am not talking about who was Prime Minister or what policies the main parties had, but the politics of the street and the culture; how we dealt with one another.
Politics doesn't have to be in books for kids, but when it is there in the environment, the writer should deal with it, not hide it away. Young people deserve better than pretending it doesn't happen.