Monday, March 21, 2011

Two Things

First, I just registered for my first writer's conference! I'm super excited even though I'm not sure if I'll get much out of it. I was too late to grab a slot for an agent critique or pitch session so all that's left is the workshops, the panels, and the social event.

I'm really hoping the workshops and panels are more useful than a lot of people make them out to be because I'm awful at mingling so I don't expect to get much networking done at the social event. One on one I'm fine. Speaking in front of a large group is not problem either. But dump me in a hotel bar with no friends in sight and I'm sunk.

I blame it on the fact that I've had the same friends pretty much forever. I just don't know how to meet new people anymore.

And the second thing is that I've discovered it's even kind of depressing just to look for body acceptance friendly novels. I mean to begin with there's the dearth of self-acceptance novels that don't involve changing oneself to gain that self-acceptance. But then, the few mentions of books with fat people who don't lose weight (first of all they're apparently termed "obesity novels" which really pisses me off like that's all the book's about or something) always make sure to wave the OH BUT IT'S TOTALLY UNHEALTHY DON'T FORGET flag which, um, just no. The whole thing makes me all stabby.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Recommended Reading: The Hunger Games Trilogy

The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mocking Jay are the books by Suzanne Collins that make up the Hunger Games trilogy.

I cannot stress enough what a fantastic read these books are. Even without the extraordinary circumstances, Collins does such a great job of making the characters compelling that I'd read a full length novel about one of them brushing their teeth.

Body Acceptance: Neutral

There is often a correlation made between weight gain and food consumption, but it's based solely on the perspective of a person used to going without and gaining weight from her point of view is usually meant in the way of becoming stronger. Most of the emphasis on bodies is framed as appreciation for what the body is capable of doing rather than the way it looks.

It's one of the few instances where you have a larger than life female character who isn't defined by her bra size. In fact, while she probably is very pretty it is mentioned several times by other characters that she "isn't that pretty." By framing it this way, I feel like Collins addresses the fact that women, no matter their accomplishments, are still judged on their looks without condoning it or preaching about it.

There is also a mention of weight-loss dieting being part of the superficial and strange culture of the Capitol.

Recommended Reading will be a recurring feature on this blog. I'm doing this in an effort to build a list of YA books that I believe are both great stories and treat people's bodies in a sensitive manner. I will do my best to point out things about books I suggest that might be triggering even if I feel the book as a whole is worthwhile. If you have suggestions for future recommended books or comments/criticisms of books I write about please feel free to leave them in comments.