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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've heard of teenagers using txt language in exams, so wondered how they would feel about a novel written in txt (anything to get them reading ::)).
I've had a go at translating Mystery at Ocean Drive (first few paragraphs). Does anyone have teenagers prepared to comment? (I KNOW for SURE that people on these boards won't like reading it (and nor would I, but we are not the target readership).

I've tried two versions.
1) Continuous txt.

IfJasonHdBroughtHisMotorbyk2aStopB4ReachgIn2HisDlvryBag4aNewsppr, hisLyfWudHvBeenVeryDiffDatSumer.AsDaBlkMercSweptOutOf aDrveway, Jason&[email protected]'sBrakes& SwungItIntoDsperateSwerve,BtTheBakWeelLoked&HeWntIn2 aSkid.HeFlewThruDaAir&SmkedIn2DaTowerinBrckG8postB4LandinWif aWalopOnDaGrasVerge.HeWachdHelpleslyAsDaScrmblerSlewedBneathTheWielsOfDaCar,WichScreched2aStopWifSmelOfBurninRuber.

2) with spaces between the words.

If Jason hd brght hs motobyk 2 a stp b4 reachg in 2 hs dlvrybag 4a newsppr, hs lyf wud hv bin vry diffrnt dat sumr.
As da blk Merc Swpt out of a drveway, Jason & da drivr saw ech othr @ almst da sme momnt . Jason hit d scramblr's brkes & swung it in2 a dsperate swerve, but da bak weel loked & he wnt in2 a skid. He flew thru da air & smaked In2 da towerin brck g8post b4 landin wif a walop on da gras verge.

3) actual text.
If Jason had brought his motorbike to a stop before reaching into his delivery bag for a newspaper, his life would have been very different that summer.
As the black Mercedes swept out of a driveway, Jason and the driver saw each other at almost the same moment. Jason hit the scrambler's brakes and swung it into a desperate swerve, but the back wheel locked and he went into a skid. He flew through the air and smacked into the towering brick gatepost before landing with a wallop on the grass verge. He watched helplessly as the scrambler slewed beneath the wheels of the car, which screeched to a stop with a smell of burning rubber.
 

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Ugh. Please don't do this.

I'm not a teen obviously, but I hate hate hate txt speak with the passion of a thousand fiery suns. I don't mind it in a book when clearly used in the context of a text one character is sending another, but as the entire novel?

No. Just no. It's bad enough that some teens use txt speak on exams but we should not be glorifying it.
 

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While I also can't stand that text speak, and it makes me worry about the intelligence of our future generations -- if you're the first one to write a novel like that, I think it would be a pretty novel idea. Has it been done before? (I have no idea.) But if you're the first to do it, then I think there's a novelty factor to the whole thing, which could get it attention. Maybe you can release it both ways?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Joel Arnold said:
While I also can't stand that text speak, and it makes me worry about the intelligence of our future generations -- if you're the first one to write a novel like that, I think it would be a pretty novel idea. Has it been done before? (I have no idea.) But if you're the first to do it, then I think there's a novelty factor to the whole thing, which could get it attention. Maybe you can release it both ways?
It's already selling on Amazon in ordinary text, but not in huge numbers. Just thought it was indeed a 'novel' idea and I'm looking for some teenagers' opinions. Will also need an expert in txt to do the translating. ::)
 

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A frequent complaint I hear from actual teens about some YA books is that the author tried too hard to sound like a teen, using what they thought was teen longo (or actually is authentic teen lingo) yet it wasn't organic. It just came off contrived.

So I'd be afraid that would be the case with a txt novel. Even if many teens actually do write like that, and thus you know it's authentic, it would still come off as the adult author trying too hard to be cool.
 
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