Sunday, February 8, 2015

Atypical Love

February is the month of love and cliches here on the YA Outside the Lines Blog, but I don't want to write about tried and true, predictable love. Today I want to talk about my favorite kind of love--atypical love. I think some of the very best love stories are found in unusual pairings.


I've often heard that when you are plotting your novel, you should write down your list of possibilities and then throw the first five ideas you come up with away. Why?  Because those ideas are too predictable. The goal is to let your imagination wander so you can see the more unusual possibilities. 

I believe that the great love stories in our books should come from outside that same box--far down the list of typical, predictable pairings. 

Not every atypical love can be as unique as these are, but here are a few examples of unique, non-cliched, love that has captured our attention as readers...


A boy and a tree.


 A gorilla and an elephant in captivity.


A teenage girl and the drug she's addicted to.


A teen boy and his POW grandfather that he meets in his dreams.


A boy and his "imaginary" dragon.

The love in these books hits a nerve because it's different and universal at the same time. It's also important to remember that atypical love can be deeper and more complicated than it might originally seem. Is The Giving Tree really about a boy and his favorite tree? All these books bring lots to contemplate, but that is the beauty of these stories. 

Now it's your turn to tell me some of your favorite atypical love stories and why you love them...

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