I was planning on doing an extensive post about songs and my setlist for my books, but the truth is I'm feeling really lazy (this is also probably why I'm not writing right now) so I'll have to save that for tomorrow. Probably.
What I do fell like talking about is contemporary novels in YA.
I LOVE CONTEMPORARY.
Seriously. Do you write contemp? Really? Then not only do I love you, but I think you are the bravest person ever. Seriously. Have a "HERO" badge.
No matter how hard I try, I can't seem to get the grip of contemporary. I've tried to write numerous contemps in the past, but they always seem to peter out after the first or second chapter. Right now I was struck with the idea of a boy who sets out to find himself through chance encouters with other people.
I love this idea. I love Toby, my MC. He came to me in entirety, and I just madly scribbled out an entire page of notes for him and his story. It's very rare that a story comes to me as a whole. Normally I have to piece it together painstakingly. But I'm super excited about this, and I really want it to work.
SO, WHAT DO I DO?
Contemporary has always seemed, to me, very character driven. I'm a plot-driven writer by heart, but I love character driven novels. I tried my hand at a character-driven novel and ended up with my agent. Woo-hoo. But the thing about Shell was that even though it was character driven, it's still heavily placed in plot.
The problem with contemporary is that it's so similiar to real life that the characters can pretty much do anything. They're not really bound by plot like characters from urban fantasy or fantasy are. To propperly illustrate:
You can click on those comics if you want a better look. I know, I'm such a wonderful artist, aren't I? :D
So all you contemp writers out there: how do you decide what's crucial to the plot? How do you write contemp? Most importantly, what do you love about it?