Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day? So Many Types of Love!

In the world of writing, love is a very strong theme. And I'm not talking about just romantic love. Love is, in my opinion, the most powerful driving force that a character can have. Love for a father, a sister, a brother, or even a place or an intangible feeling is often strong motivation for our characters. Hence, love is extremely powerful in writing. In The Hunger Games, it is Katniss's love for her sister that begins her adventures in the arena. Even in my own Collapse Series, it is Cassidy's love for her father and her freedom that eventually drives her to step up her game and fight back. This Valentine's Day, I'm setting aside the chocolate (for a minute, at least) and taking a look at the major types of literary love that we can find in the pages of our favorite books. 

  • Parent/child. Some people mistakenly believe that all love stories are between a boy and a girl. This is simply not so! Some of the greatest love stories of all time are those that show the relationship between a mother and daughter or father and daughter, etc. In The Mortal Instruments, by Cassandra Clare, Clary's unwavering love and devotion to her mother is the driving force throughout the novels. Her love for Jace is strong - but it's the mother/daughter bond that gives the story the power it needs to hit home. 
  • Friendship. The power of friendship is a type of love all in itself! I love books that draw on the power of friendship to bring the main characters through their trials. I think that Jonathan Maberry's Rot and Ruin books do a great job of that, in addition to James Dashner's The Maze Runner and The Scorch Trials. The bond between friends is, many times, what keeps characters alive - and what makes you fall in love with them
  • Boy and girl. I had to mention it, because yes. It's kind of a big deal, like it or hate it, when it comes to literature. Love makes characters to crazy things. Come to think of it, love makes us do crazy things. But that's okay, because it's a great emotion to utilize in stories. My favorite romance stories include great classics like The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Jane Eyre, Frankenstein, Beauty and the Beast and so many more. I like deep love. Not instant love. Love that develops over time, that comes out of respect and understanding. Yes, I'm an old romantic, but you know what? Old romantics are what make the world go round! *wink* 
  •                                             An Idea.
    This is a huge one, and one that I think is vastly overlooked in many cases. The love of a way of life or an ideal can be a very strong motivator for characters. Take Saving Private Ryan, for example. Captain Miller's love - and his men's love -  for the American way of life are why they're overseas fighting in Europe in the first place. It drives them to do the right thing and yes - save Private Ryan.

Love isn't always what you think it is. It shows up in the most peculiar of places, and is often present in the most hopeless situations. In real life, it's what gets us through our worst days - and in the fictional realm, it does the same thing. It saves our characters! 

Happy Valentine's Day, folks!

1 comment:

  1. Love comes in many forms whether in real life or fiction. Happy Valentine's Day Summer.


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