Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Road Trip Wednesday: Themes

It's time for another Road Trip Wednesday, a blog carnival hosted by the lovely ladies of YA Highway.
This week's question: 

What themes, settings, motifs, scenes, or other elements do you find recurring in your work?
 
There are a few things I find myself drawn to over and over again, either in my current WIP or the things I am planning.
 
Non-white main characters
Yes, I'm white. But my husband isn't. Many of my closest friends aren't. About half of my students aren't. My world isn't just white, and when I picture characters or scenes, the people who populate it aren't either. I can't speak for the rest of my life, but right now I can't imagine writing a story about a while girl and her white love interest and all of her white friends. My brain doesn't work that way.
 
Complicated relationships
Oh, I am so fascinated by complicated relationships. Falling in love with the wrong person (and not in the "oops, you're a vampire" or "oh, you're such a mysterious bad boy" type of way), doing something with good but misguided intentions that ruins your chances with someone, bad timing. I love the idea of people who want to be together but can't make it work, for whatever reason.
 
Kissing
Who doesn't love some awesome kissing?
 
What about you? What do you find yourself consistently adding to your work?

20 comments:

  1. I'm so glad that you have a variety of characters. The YA community needs lots more of awesome non-white MCs!

    And really, there's no one who doesn't love awesome kissing. :P

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  2. My last two main characters were mixed race. I was so nervous that I didn't get some basic cultural things down right. It's great that you are offering non-white main characters for YA readers.

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  3. Very cool answers :) The world needs more kissing! I can't seem to write without at least one VERY sarcastic character. Themes of family relationships seem to crop up as well as betrayal.

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  4. I am with you on the multi-culturalism! Actually, to date, none of my Love Interest boys have been fully white (two are half-white), which my husband finds amusing since he's like 100% German, LOL. I'm glad you're writing books that reflect real life!

    And doomed relationships *SWOON* So heartwrenchingly fun to read!

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  5. That's awesome that you're comfortable writing your MCs as races other than your own. We need more of that in YA!

    I tend to prefer the complicated, messed up relationships as well. Maybe I'm just a twisted person, but they're more fun to write and more interesting to analyze.

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  6. I am distracted by the "I hate Spinnerbait" in your profile. Like... the lure? Or something I can't find on the first page of Google? LOL

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  7. I love complicated and/or doomed relationships. They are wonderful to analyze.

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  8. I realized the other day that most of the characters in one of my manuscripts aren't white. I was a little surprised, because I'd never really considered their ethnicity before. But when I thought about it, it just made sense that they would be all sorts of different races.

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  9. I love to read diversity in books and am actually writing a YA contemporary about a complicated interracial romance because those are my favorite!

    I also love kissing and a really interesting or funny supporting characters.

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  10. I really can't wait to read your book Jess! I love the diversity. Even in my small midwest town, there are growing level of diversity. Why shouldn't books include that?

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  11. I love that you write nonwhite main characters. I'm always too afraid to write a nonwhite protagonist since I'm white and I feel like anything I write will be inauthentic.

    And kissing? I prefer the books I read to have at least a little!

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  12. I'm all about complicated relationships (in my writing world, not my real world ;) And I love that you don't just have an all-white cast of characters. I want the same diversity in my work but I want it to just be there and not be overt about it.

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  13. Fellow Campaigner finally stopping by to say hello. Fun post!

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  14. you have the cutest blog! sorry it took me so long to follow you back here! so glad i FINALLY did! YA DOES need that. I love reading books where the timing is off--it's a great conflict and keeps me turning pages! christy

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  15. Hi there! I'm pleased to present you with the Versatile Blogger award - further details and fine print available at http://kelworthfiles.wordpress.com/2011/09/14/its-blog-awards-time-again/

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  16. Of course kissing! The best part of writing YA, I think. And complicated relationships... the cornerstone of literature, especially contemporary. I look forward to reading your work someday!

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  17. Definitely death. You've read at least parts of both my books so...you knew that already :) But I swear it's like every time I get a novel idea, someone is dying! Ugh.

    I actually DO know what I'm going to write about next, and I don't think anyone dies. Well, someone IS dead, but it happens way, way before the novel starts. It's not even a big deal. (At least not yet. For all I know, it becomes the central freaking plot point. That would SO be me.)

    Also, I think you inspired me to move my book-crush to another day and start doing RTW. I love reading yours!

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  18. Aren't all relationships complicated? If they aren't, then someone's in denial!

    Hmm... not sure what it is specifically that creeps into my writing. I'm not sure that I ever seek to answer any big questions. What I like to do, though, is take a main character from a point of confusion/depression/doubt to a point of clarity/acceptance. Whatever happens along the way generally entertains and enlightens both of us.

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  19. I always seem to have #2 in my stories too. And yay for #3!

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