Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Growing Pains

A few months ago, one of my sons woke up in the middle of the night. He was crying and rubbing at his ankles and legs, complaining of pain. After checking for any additional symptoms, I determined he had growing pains, gave him some ibuprofen, and sent him back to bed with a hug and kiss.

I love the term "Growing Pains." We all suffer through them, whether physically, emotionally, spiritually...it's a part of life. It can be a five-year-old child waking in the middle of the night, clutching his ankles with tears in his eyes, or an adult waking in the middle of the night, clutching their tear-stained pillow. The good news is that on the other side of the pain, you'll come out a little taller, perhaps a little wiser.

Growing pains are so essential to the characters we create, not necessarily the hurdles that need to be overcome, but those internal struggles, the quietest of battles that determine who they become.

One novel that completely succeeds in this (in my opinion) is Catcher in The Rye. I remember reading it in high school and feeling connected in a way that I never had before.

So let's offer a rousing favorite Princess Bride cheer:


Monday, April 2, 2012

Disney Romance

Last week Donna, Kirk and I went to dinner with the lovely Bree Despain and Brodi Ashton. We ate thai food, discussed books, and talked writing. I can't really think of an evening I enjoy more!

Bree, who is really quite brilliant, shared some advice that I liked so much I wanted to post it. She talked about the three different kinds of romances, and identifying the type of romance you might be writing.

The first is the Cinderella romance, where the woman is in love with the man, and trying to catch his attention. (See also Little Mermaid).

The second is the Beauty and the Beast romance, where the man is in love with the woman and trying to catch her attention. (See also Aladdin).

The third is the Sleeping Beauty romance, where the couple is in love but circumstances keep them apart. (See also Snow White).

Although I'm not writing a romance, per se, there is a romantic element in my book. While trying to fit it in to the three categories Bree talked about, I realized my romance didn't quite fit.

So I'd also like to submit a fourth romance for suggestion. In keeping with the Disney theme, I think there is also the Tangled romance, where the couple doesn't begin in love, but through time and circumstance that pushes them together, end up falling in love. (See also Princess and the Frog).

I think my romance might be more of a Tangled contender.

What are you writing?