Music. It makes the world go ‘round, and it helps set a mood for writing. Some people can’t write with any kind of noise or distraction, but I find that if I’m really focused, I’m not even paying attention to the music.
I read a lot of YA even though I am probably 10 years out of the demographic now, but I didn’t read a lot when I actually was “the right age” if there is such a thing. As a child, I read a lot, but I don’t know if most of those books would be considered young adult, at least not in the way it’s considered now.
I don’t know about you, but I always seem to get the same feedback on my writing: your character isn’t likeable. I’ve started to detest that word. Likeable. What is likeable anyway? Someone who has no opinions? Someone who’s nice to everyone? Charming? Suave? Friendly?