Thursday, 22 April 2010

Blowing Kisses at an Empty Auditorium

The one definite thing I remember from my teenage years is boys, boys, boys. I mean, we were totally obsessed. This is where I have 'this' book fail. I tried to include a boy with freckles (in fact he's still floating around and needs to be removed), but Sydney wasn't interested and the nearest romance I could conjure up for him was with her dead sister. And even that felt like I had my shoehorn out. So I suspect he'll most definitely have to go...unless he woos me with chocolates.

Then I have a hint of romance between Sydney's friends, Lin and Billy. Problem is, Billy's part should probably be removed from the book as he doesn't appear to do much (other than spend the first part of the book mooning over the evil teacher). There's going to be no one left. Gah!

Then I started worrying that a YA book should have romance. Most of them I've read seem to...not all I guess, but the ones that don't, I think, had younger protagonists.  The wonderful Lisa Mantchev's sequel to Eyes Like Stars seems centred around romance...








...and I look at that trailer and I know I have to read the book. (Okay, reading the first book helped with the want but go with me here).

So I ask myself, is Death/Fairytale/Don't people have to be alive at the end to have a happily ever after (and perhaps they are, but not necessarily in the expected sense) enough when I'm writing for teenage girls/boys. Do the hormones have to be involved?

...But then again, I do believe Thief likes Sydney, it's just the author wasn't aware of that fact for the first hundred or so pages. I suspect this book may take some time to complete.

Anyone have a headache yet? :D

Kind of going off topic here: Another thing I remember about my teenage years is wanting to be Molly Ringwald. I even ordered a hairdresser to turn me into her once (she failed). I have to have this book.




13 comments:

Natalie L. Sin said...

Mmm. Boys : )

katey said...

I remember a few books from those years that didn't have any romance, and I thought they were stellar. Then again, I always wanted to BE the hero-boy rather than kiss him. So maybe I'm not the best sample. Hm!

(Occasionally I wanted to kiss him. But not everyone is Gilbert Blythe, let's face it-- and anyhow, he was decidedly NOT the hero.)

K.C. Shaw said...

You can have the boy character be a stalwart friend, and at the end maybe there's a hint that it might turn into something more than just friendship. Then you've got no-romance and romance in the same book!

I was totally obsessed with boys in my schooldays too. At the same time, I didn't really like most of the boys in my class and I was perfectly happy to read books without any kind of love interest.

Alan W. Davidson said...

Mmm. Molly :0)

Crap, I'm starting to sound like Nat!

Aaron Polson said...

Can I get a showing of 16 Candles? (How may times did I watch the way-too edited Breakfast Club on TV?)

Brendan said...

Great post, Cate. I'm about to inject a potential romantic interest for my protag because it feels like I "should," not because he needs it, and the writing feels strained. We'll see how it goes . . .

Andrea Allison said...

I remember in high school very few relationships actually stuck it out to graduation. Maybe you should try a flighty romance. One that's cute but you know deep down it's not going to last.

Cate Gardner said...

Perhaps I could get away with it...Although, I think it otherwise reads like the kind of book that would have a romance. I think I'll set a fire under the bad boy and see what happens this weekend.

Corinne said...

My current WIP is sans romance too, but it's not YA, so I might be able to get away with it easier...

Er, basically, I'd say go with what feels right. If you shoehorn something in, people will know.

Also:
Don't people have to be alive at the end to have a happily ever after

That made me laugh. It's very, er, you :D

Jamie Eyberg said...

I was so unbelievably shy around girls in high school it was embarrassing. I don't want to even talk about middle school. :P

Cate Gardner said...

Cory, thanks I think :D

Jamie, that's so cute.

Paula Ray said...

Blowing Kisses at an Empty Auditorium...what a great title...you must write a story with this title, Kate..it's fabulous! I haven't read much YA, but it is a popular genre. I like the trailer too...the mix of song and art really sets the tone. I taught middle school for years...boys and romance are essential to spark the interest of girls at that age. I sometimes felt like boys and romance were all girls that age could focus on. Good post, Kate.

Cate Gardner said...

Thanks, Paula.