Another great RTW topic at YA Highway this week:
What themes, setting, motifs, scenes, or other elements do you find reoccurring in your work?
As funny as it sounds, since I write realistic stuff and am scared of things that go bump in the night:
Although I mean mine more figuratively, as in ghosts of the past have a way of catching up to my characters and creating all sorts of havoc.
There are no perfect people in my books, not even close. I like that moral ambiguity – well X happened first, does it justify the Y response that is so seemingly f’ed up?
These all go together in most of my WIPs. One is about a group of friends (not YA – gasp!) and my MC is like a surrogate mother to everyone. She listens to their problems, makes snacks, and is really supportive.
In my YA stuff, parents poke their noses into things, as parents do. I’ve got one set who are addicts and regularly screw up, but the one thing that remains constant is the fierce (almost too much so at times) love they have for their kid.
- Laid-back/I was born in a small town
I grew up with backyard haircuts, hand-me-down clothes from boy cousins, and swimming excursions to “the lake.” I’m used to people sitting on porches and saying things like, “I reckon so” while having a few beers.
Most of my characters grew up in small towns (or moved to a small town and experienced culture shock) and everyone is fairly ordinary. They drive beat-up cars, work retail, and hang out in parking lots when there’s nothing better to do.
So I think all my themes add up to this:
I try to write real people/places with all their imperfections and quirks…with the hope there’s something relatable about them, because no matter if you’re from a town of 200** or a city of 2 million, some things are universal, like family and love and finding that little place you belong.
*Sorry if you were expecting Sister Sledge
**My town is considerably bigger than this; about 14,000 people, in case you were wondering. Or, if not, it’s a fun little stat. Yay, stats!