Month: May 2014

Mean Girls in Young Adult Fiction

There are people who would prefer that the stereotypical mean girl, who so often appears in young adult fiction, would go the way of the dodo bird.  But why?  Literature is sprinkled with femme fatale characters who use their beauty and charm to manipulate.  They lie and deceive.  They bring a certain magic to the story.  Like the femme fatale, the mean girl serves much the same purpose.

The teenage years are a time of growing and maturing.  It’s also the time when many teens are at their most vulnerable.  Having a mean girl allowed me to use her as a tool – one that could expose my main character’s insecurities.  Jenna is a typical teen.  She’s the new girl in school.  She’s dealing with all the baggage that comes with a move – finding her place in a new social environment while mourning the loss of the security of her former life and friends.  Mean Girl Melissa helped to propel Jenna’s story.  She made sure Jenna felt out of place.  She possessed a confidence that Jenna lacked.   Because of her, Jenna had to grow.  She had to become a young woman who knew her own self-worth. 

But what of the mean girl?  Why do we typically choose to describe her as popular and beautiful?   After all, we all know girls that are not only popular/beautiful but sweet and kind.  So why the stereotype?  There are a variety of reasons but one reason sticks out for me.  In our society, looks are valued; females tend to compare themselves to their peers.  Most people can relate to the girl who is all too aware of the pimple that blemishes her face or the hair that refuses to cooperate.  We know what it’s like to feel as though we don’t measure up.  The mean girl is beautiful because she has to be.  She’s the picture of perfection, a contrast to the main character’s self-perceived shortcomings.

 

Interview with D.S. McKnight, Author of Of Dreams and Shadow

The Children's and Teens' Book Connection

D.S. McKnightD.S. McKnight has enjoyed a varied career—from working as a radio DJ on a small AM station to serving as president and co-owner of a marina, until Hurricane Ophelia took aim at the Carolina coast.  Currently, she works at an insurance agency as well as hosting her blog – Novel Notions.  

It is her love of the North Carolina coast that fueled her desire to write.  Of Dreams and Shadow: Forget Me Not (book 1) is her first novel.  

You can visit the author’s website at: http://www.dsmcknight.com

When did you begin writing?

I have been writing since I was a teenager – poems, lyrics to songs, and short stories –  words that were only seen by me.  When I reached my forties, I realized I had neglected myself.  My days were spent working, getting my children to and from practices and games, helping with homework, etc. …

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Book Tour!

Of Dreams and Shadow: Forget Me Not (Book 1) is going on tour with 

Pump Up Your Book Tours.  

I’ll be visiting some really awesome blogs so stop by!

PUYB Tour Schedule A


Divider 9Monday, May 5

Guest Blogging at Bibliotica

Tuesday, May 6

Book Featured at Laurie’s Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews

Wednesday, May 7

Book Review at World of My Imagination

Thursday, May 8

Guest Blogging at Lori’s Reading Corner

Friday, May 9

Book Review at Pink Fluffy Hearts: Diary of a Coffee Addict

Monday, May 12

Book Review at Book Club Sisters

Tuesday, May 13

Book Review at Mary’s Cup of Tea

Wednesday, May 14

Interview at The Children’s and Teens Book Connection

Book Featured at I Heart Reading

Monday, May 19

Book Review at Crazy Four Books

Thursday, May 22

Guest Blogging at CBY Book Club

Monday, May 26

Book Review at Emeraldfire’s Bookmark

Tuesday, May 27

Book Featured at Mom With a Kindle

Wednesday, May 28

Book Review at Queen of All She Reads

Friday, May 30

Book Review at Ashley’s Bookshelf

Book Review at Bound 4 Escape