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The Blog Ring of Power Presents...
Today we have an interview with author Matthew Cox via BRoP member Vicki Lempe Weavil. This is a return visit for Matthew who is celebrating the release of his third novel (but first young adult novel), Caller 107. Feel free to leave a comment or question for Matthew below, and when you're done here, pop on over to the other BRoP sites to read the rest of the interview. This interview is also part of the Caller 107 blog tour, so be sure to check out all the other stops and enter the giveaway!
this one and this one support those ideas) and there are plenty of books where the love interests are the same age, and more and more books where the woman is older.
But when Twilight came out, and Edward was sneaking into Bella’s room to watch her sleep before she knew it, it kind of hit me (and scores of other readers) that this January-December romance might be a little squicky. (Not to diss that book. I liked it when I read it.) It seems in the years since that a bigger number of YAs or New Adult novels have paired teen girls with older men, often teachers. To name just a few, Pretty Little Liars, Slammed, the darker and less-well-read Captive in the Dark and Veiled Innocence (which was a nice turnaround of the girl being the aggressor). That’s not to get into the paranormals, such as The Vampire Academy books. Even with their leading lady who pushed boundaries, she still went for the traditional hero. (Which I’m not complaining about. Dmitri. Happy sigh.) The guys in these books are great. I’m not saying the girls shouldn’t have been all in.
But then there’s the side of life books don’t get into. Grocery shopping. Paying rent. Being so tired after work that all you want to do is come home and crash on the couch. The guy’s whiskers left all over the sink. Things that decidedly are not sexy. I mean, I crazy-ship Beth and Daryl in the TV version of The Walking Dead, despite their age difference. But in real life, if there was not a zombie apocalypse, Daryl wouldn’t be some heroic boyfriend for Beth who’d do things like remember her birthday, go to her performances or care about her friends. Of course, love makes squicky things, like watching you sleep, romantic.
I don’t know, I’m a huge believer in willing suspension of disbelief, and I’ve loved lots of older-man characters. (My WIP has a — I’ll say love possibility instead of love interest — who’s seven or eight years older than the seventeen-year-old MC. He’s a police officer.) But the biggest time this age difference doesn’t work for me is when the man’s the teacher. That’s a pairing that’s so imbalanced power-wise that I just can’t get behind it. Why? I’m not sure. I love it when bad-on-paper pairings work out. I like dark romances. But the person who is supposed to challenge you to learn new things and assign homework shouldn’t want something, especially sex, in exchange -- no matter how meeting-of-the-minds the connection is made out to be. He’s getting paid to teach you and he sees you every day in an environment in which the age difference — the life difference — is emphasized. It’s a time in which teen girls need to learn to relate to men in a nonsexual way, or they will always be seen and see themselves as a walking vagina first, and a smart, thoughtful person second. That’s the worst life lesson a girl can get. So I don’t find teachers sexy. In fact, teacher romances have become an immediate turn-off for me. Like books with surprise babies, they need warning labels.
Maybe the other part of why it doesn’t work for me is the tone of the books. I mean, I can read a book about a guy who kidnaps a woman and they fall in love, or a pair of lovers who kill someone together, or a guy who falls in love with the girl he bullies, and never blink. It’s the treatment. When you read a book that’s dark, you expect dark things to happen. When you read a book that sets out to include a sincere romance, dark things seem out of place.
And, I still think paranormals (and probably dystopians, too) exist in their own special place where age doesn’t matter. (Go Daryl and Beth!) Call me contradictory.
Olga Gay Worontzoff thinks her biggest problems are an awful name and not attending prom with Conner, her best friend and secret crush since kindergarten.
Then, Conner is killed in a freak boating accident and Olga feels responsible for his death.
When she downs an entire bottle of pills to deal with the emotional pain, her parents force her into counseling. There, her therapist writes a prescription in the form of a life list titled “18 Things”: eighteen quests to complete the year of her eighteenth birthday.
But there’s more to Olga’s quests than meets the eye and when her therapist reveals a terrifying secret, her world is shaken.
There’s only one thing she knows for certain: her choices won’t just affect her future, but all eternity.
And a big thank you to Jamie Ayres for sending me a copy!
Now, there are 246 pages to 18 Things, and I'm reading it on a Kindle with percentages...So let's see what happens. lol
Random.org has given me Page 198, which is 80.4% into the story.
And there are 17 lines on the 80% area where I stopped, so...Random.org gave me line 17!
"If I would've known your parents weren't home, I would've invited Mom and Dad in to take some pictures for us."
And now I'll force myself not to read everything around it just yet!
I think this professor promised to do a post about Sad Humor.
It’s a wonder of a topic, in truth.
For…what is it?
Well…here’s some thoughts.
One, Sad Humor could be humor that’s sad in nature, but still makes one laugh. Maybe Pathetic Humor would be a better phrase for this type of Sad Humor.
Two, Sad Humor could be humor that is so low–so base–that it makes one cringe. “This,” you might say, “was horribly sad humor.” It’s just not funny, you see.
Three, Sad Humor could be humor that makes you sad after you hear it. Here’s an example: Suppose an ant is invading the professor’s home, and the professor crushes him in self-defense. This is funny at first, because the ant’s invasion failed so miserably. It’s ultimately sad, though, because the invasion didn’t bloom into a war. (Maybe not the best example.)
Four, Sad Humor could be something this professor just made up.
Punchy Family, I fear that I’m leaning towards the last one. Any thoughts on the matter?
Just a picture: A bunch of fish going to school.
Without that time spent letting our minds roam, none of our creations would come to life. We need time to dream, time to plan. Letting our imagination run wild is the best way to fill our invented worlds with real details and make our characters larger than life.
I don't know about you, but I often hold whole conversations in my head between multiple characters as though I were schizophrenic. Create flowery descriptions of places I've never seen. Or plot misery and suffering for my main character. Then I'll frantically text information not to be forgotten to myself or jot it down on scraps of paper pushed into drawers in my bedroom.
Background music is a necessity for me, though any sort of talking brings my #amimagining to a screeching halt. I can't work with the tv going or when my teens are chattering. For me, #amimagining requires solitude or at least silence from the other person.
The absolutely best time for me to plan a murder, kiss, or sword fight is while I'm getting ready in the morning. Then when I come downstairs, I can rush straight to writing--if I'm lucky. If I can stay awake, the time before sleep is also great for #amimagining. Taking the dogs for a long walk is the perfect place to work out plot problems. And vacuuming is not only relaxing and useful, but fantastically creative!
So let's have a conversation about the wonders of #amimagining. What are your requirements? Where do you get your best thinking done? Shout out about it on twitter and in the comments. Let's see if we can't get this hashtag trending!
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