Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Teen Romance

I'm a sucker for the romantic. A big sucker. I love the tension that builds to a relationship. I love it when those relationships get tested and the couple comes out okay. I love it when people fall in love.One of the best things about being a Young Adult writer is getting the chance to create those love stories.

When I was a teenager I wanted to date, but I never really got asked out. I had one boyfriend and we only lasted three months. It wasn't until I got to college and met my husband that I ever had a true romantic relationship. He was my first and only love.

The idea of two teens falling in love and spending forever together, though romantic, was foreign to me. I was surprised to see some of my high school friends marry other people from my high school. I thought it was awesome, but I just didn't get it.

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I want to be real in my writing, and I do believe love can be found in teenagedom, but can it really last? The fact is, even though it may not be true for my life, I believe in it enough that I write it into my books.

The idea of there being one person who is right for you is so romantic, how could pass that up in my writing?

Of course my characters are real, they don't just fall in love with no reason behind it. There has to be things that push them together. Heck, if I was dealing with half the stuff my characters have to go through I would cling to the one person that helped me through it as well.

The point is, love needs to be true, but it doesn't have to just be true to your life. All your book needs to do is be true to who your characters are. If you do that your readers will swoon right along with you.

19 comments:

Gossip_Grl said...

Love this posting. I met my hubby when I was 15 y/o. In May it will be 33 years ago that we met.

Angela V. Cook said...

It's not so much whether or not teens can really meet their one, true love at such a young age (I think it can happen, but it's pretty rare). It's the fact THEY BELIEVE they can--no matter what anyone tells them. When you're a teen in love, you feel like it's forever; that you couldn't live without that other person, and THAT'S the feeling that needs to get conveyed in the writing. As a writer, it doesn't really matter whether or not I think it'll last, because at that moment, it's real. Does any of this make sense? lol. Great post!!

Kyra Lennon said...

That pretty much sums up my thoughts! :D

Also, my sister married her high school boyfriend, and they are still going strong ... *counts on fingers* ... 26 years later! :D

Krista McLaughlin said...

My parents met when my dad was a senior in high school and they got married after my mom graduated (she's two years younger). They were nineteen and twenty-one years old when they got married. They will have their 29th anniversary this year and are still in love with each other. Teenagers do look at love a little differently and it is fun to get a chance to write that. Great post! :)

Shallee said...

I love this point. We all find love in so many different ways, and it's important to remember that! I'm a sucker for a good love story too.

Donna K. Weaver said...

I had a similar experience in high school. And college. My daughter and her husband dated their senior year and then (dumb kids) eloped right out of high school. Well, they're still married (14 years), and they have four kids.

Ashley Nixon said...

I believe teens can find love and I believe it can last. It happened to my best friends (my two best friends are married to each other, lol). I'm recently trying to make a shift to Adult Fantasy, but when I write, I usually have a couple characters who just 'fell in love'...it was a moment where, when they saw each other, the feeling overcame them that they couldn't let that person go. That is realistic to me because it happened to me. :)

Jessie Humphries said...

All my high school boyfriends were total losers! I see them sometimes, and think, Oh thank goodness. So, no I am sort of a hater on high school loves. I should get over myself.

Ruth Josse said...

I'm with Angela that in a teens life, everything feels real and forever. Whether they end up together in the end or not, they believe they will make it. GReat post!

JEFritz said...

Very well put about it needing to be true for the characters. As long as it's real to them (and realistic to us readers, I guess), it doesn't matter if they're sixteen or sixty.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I have a co-worker who married the girl he dated in high school and they are still married after almost twenty years. Doesn't happen often. I didn't meet my wife until I was out of college.

Carolyn V said...

I love the swooning factor!

I married the guy I dated from high school. He liked me from my freshmen year and we became really good friends, but the dating didn't come until later (my senior year, he was graduated). We both went our separate ways for a while (we went to different colleges), but when we were back home, we realized we both still really liked each other and got married. We're still together, and I still think he is the best. It happens.

Joanne said...

Staying true to the characters matters so much. And if their true colorsreally shine through, the love just seems natural, don't you think?

Laura said...

so true, and there's nothing as magical as fiction. I know many couples now in their 50s / 60s who met and married in their teens - proof enough that for some people, their soulmate was discovered early.
Lx

Christa Desir said...

Stephanie Perkins does this very well, I think. And she's the real deal bc she fell in love with her husband at 17yo. I'm writing an anti-love love story right now and I have cried every day since I started. I hope that means it's real.

Gwen said...

Still waiting for a real relationship :/ But I know people who meet in middle school and are planning to get married. So I know it happens. I find the drama in those relationship later, 10 years down the road, 15, to be interesting as well. Do things last? I just love possibilities and scenarios, and romance is really good at that. But I always like it as a secondary plot. I'm of the opinion you have to be your own person before you can be in a healthy relationship, so items of personhood always come first in my mind.

Kelley said...

This is SO wonderfully said. I've never been in love (not yet anyway :)) but I do believe in love and that it can happen at any age. Love having it in my work and in that I read.

Tara Tyler said...

and to prove its true love, we place obstacles and torment them. because that really happens and they cant just give up when things get tough!

Sarah Pearson said...

I believe it can happen, but like you say, it needs to be more than just boy meets girl and they fall in love. I didn't marry my senior school boyfriend, but for four years i really thought I was going to.