Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Romance Around Plot VS Plot Around Romance; Celebrating the release of Modern Monsters with Kelley York

Modern Monsters
Release Date: 06/02/15
Entangled Teen

Summary from Goodreads:

Vic Howard never wanted to go to the party. He’s the Invisible Guy at school, a special kind of hell for quiet, nice guys. But because his best friend is as popular as Vic is ignored, he went…

And wished he hadn’t.

Because something happened to a girl that night. Something terrible, unimaginable, and Callie Wheeler’s life will never be the same. Plus, now Callie has told the police that Vic did it. Suddenly, Invisible Vic is painfully visible, on trial both literally, with the police, and figuratively, with the angry and judgmental kids at school. As the whispers and violence escalate, he becomes determined to clear his name, even if it means an uneasy alliance with Callie’s best friend, the beautiful but aloof Autumn Dixon.

But as Autumn and Vic slowly peel back the layers of what happened that night, they realize that while the truth can set him free, it can also shatter everything he thought he knew about his life…

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Romance Around Plot VS Plot Around Romance 

If you’ve read any of my books, you’ll know romance often takes a back seat to the rest of the plot. In all of my books, you could take out the romantic aspect, and still have a coherent story. Archer would still kill people and come to realize he’s probably making some bad life choices, Vince would still lose hisfoster mom and battle his depression alongside his friends, London would still fake having a boyfriend so no one finds out she’s gay... 

This is a conscious decision on my part. Romance-oriented plots can be great! The first romance plot that hits me is, of course, Twilight. Because without the romance, there really wouldn’t have been a story. The story was their romance. There are entire genres dedicated to romance being the single most important aspect of the book. Compare it to something like Harry Potter or Hunger Games, where the romance can be stripped out, and you’d still have plot. 

But that’s not what I write. In fact, here’s an admission: romance is really, really difficult for me.

Which is kind of dumb because I’m really a hopeless romantic at heart, but I’m not great at expressing it in words. I can envision characters professing love for one another, having heated moments of passion,moving heaven and earth to be with each other. Then I go to write it and it’s like, “HOW DOES WORDS?!?!”  

So while editing Modern Monsters, when I got my first round of edits and one of the notes was: “Let’s beef up the romance!” my first thought was, “Nope. Not going to happen. I’m incapable. Failure.” 

It was a good exercise for me, though...after I stopped flailing uselessly. Especially since I have a book in the works that I’m struggling through because it is one of those romance-oriented stories. I’m not a fan of the insta-love trope in my own books. I’m more of a slow burn writer, letting things come across subtly and slowly. Because slow burn and subtle—for me—gives me some of the most fun scenes to write.  

What kind of tropes do you love or hate in your YA novels? Is there something you used to like but has played itself out?

About the Author
"I like unicorns and cats and games...and stuff..." - quality author quote by Kelley

Kelley York was born in central California, where she still resides with her lovely wife, step-daughter, and way too many cats, while fantasizing about moving to England or Ireland. (Or, really, anyplace secluded.) She has a fascination with bells and animals and Disney. Her life goal is to find a real unicorn. Or to at least write about them. She occupies her spare time with video games,designing covers, playing on Tumblr, and watching anime.

Kelley is a sucker for dark fiction. She loves writing twisted characters, tragic happenings, and bittersweet endings that leave you wondering and crying. She strives to make character development take center stage in her books because the bounds of a person's character and the workings of their mind are limitless.

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the giveaway; this book sounds really good and I like the cover. ;)