Monday, July 25, 2011

Me Then; Read Now

Back in high school, I was different. I liked black. I loved black. I wanted to be edgy. I dreamed of drinking tea, mug steaming, as I contemplated my next novel of epic proportions.

I thought Hot Topic was the bee's knees.

I said that things "rocked my socks" as a form of approval.

I broke into song and semi-dance often, uncontrollably even, because what's the point of being borderline Goth, if you can't also be a walking contradiction?

I was conflicted. I was angsty. I was a teen. (I want lightning to strike at this moment, or an 80s anthem to play, which may or may not have anything to do with me watching Some Kind of Wonderful before the sun came up today).

But the point of this reflection is that I changed. I still have friends from high school. They're the main friends that I have, and when I came back from running off to school in the mountains, I:

Ditched the black (mostly).

Grabbed polos.

Rocked fake pearls (<3 them…wore them Saturday).

Basically, I shocked them something ridiculous.

And this got me thinking about what type of heroine I like to read about when I read YA. Do I like edgy and dark and Goth because I was all of that in high school (or tried to be)? Or do I like preppy because that did it for me after high school?

Well, the answer is, you don't have to read who you are or who you were, and neither do I. The kind of girl I like reading is the girl who is snarky, NOT CLUELESS, and has a weird, if not sarcastic, sense of humor. And while I may share some similarities to that, the girl doesn't need to be like me for me to like the story.

What about you? Do you like to read for like-minded MCs or do you want to read about your opposite? OR, maybe you want to read about the person you think you are but for some reason aren't (I've done that one)? Let me know below.

Now I'll leave you with a song to write by, "Changes" by 3 Doors Down. Heart it. 


  1. I like to read characters who aren't afraid to stand up for themseleves, maybe because I want to be like that. But I also like them to have flaws because then I don't feel so bad for not having the whole package.

  2. Jennie, good point. I do hate when writers make they're characters out to be perfect. I'm big on "realistic" portrayals of people (even if the plot is outlandish).

  3. It depends. I definitely love flawed characters. Other than that, sometimes I like characters like me, others characters I wish I was like.

  4. Kelley: Yep. I'm all over the place too, as long as the MC sounds "real" and interesting enough for me to flip the pages.

  5. I do like certain things to be similar to me, or else I have a hard time identifying with the mc. For one, I hate whiners. I can't read whiny mc's, and if I write one, I try to make it humorous. I like snarky but lovable, sensitive with a streak of chutzpah. So in that sense, I do enjoy like-minded. But I prefer they be more confident and more attractive and more outgoing than me, because reading a book about someone who's EXACTLY like me would make one boring read.

  6. Gina, I know how you feel. I want them to react how I'd react (with more chutzpah), but I also want them to be cooler than me in various ways. (or at least have cooler things happen to them)