Tag: young adult

  • Dumplin Film Storytelling Techniques

    Dumplin Film Storytelling Techniques

    Dumplin is a 2018 young adult film based on the 2015 novel by Julie Murphy. PARATEXT Willowdean (‘Dumplin’), the plus-size teenage daughter of a former beauty queen, signs up for her mom’s Miss Teen Bluebonnet pageant as a protest that escalates when other contestants follow her footsteps, revolutionizing the pageant and their small Texas town. IMDb description At a deep,…

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  • The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier Novel Study

    The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier Novel Study

    The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier was not written with a young adult audience in mind, but class sets of the book found their way into English departments all over the world. Though this is not my favourite Cormier novel, it remains his best known. Heavy in symbolism and discussable themes, The Chocolate War also makes for a good case study in…

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  • I Kill Giants As Perfect Example Of Being-toward-death

    I Kill Giants As Perfect Example Of Being-toward-death

    I Kill Giants is a film and comic book for an upper middle grade audience which functions as a perfect example of Heidegger’s Being-toward-death.

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  • Cameras In Storytelling

    Cameras In Storytelling

    The invention of cameras was a boon for storytellers. Writers and film directors have this new narrative tool — in the shape of a camera — which allows them to play around with perspective, to use as a metaphor and as a way to explore death. (No kidding. Read on!)

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  • Thirteen (2003) Film Study

    Thirteen (2003) Film Study

    Thirteen is a 2003 feature length indie film which punches above its low-budget weight thanks to expert storytelling and characterisation. Director Catherine Hardwicke co-wrote the script with her erstwhile step-daughter Nikki Reed, who also stars as Evie Zamora. Hardwicke has known Nikki since Nikki was five. At the time this film came out I was teaching at a girls’ high…

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  • The Woods At The End of Autumn Street by Lois Lowry

    The Woods At The End of Autumn Street by Lois Lowry

    Lois Lowry is an American children’s author, best known for The Giver. The Woods At The End Of Autumn Street is an upper middle grade novel set in WW2 America. The following biographical information feels relevant to The Woods At The End of Autumn Street: Born in 1937, that makes Lois Lowry the same era/age as Liz in Autumn Street. The…

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  • Popular Kids In Stories For Adolescents

    Children’s literature is at the vanguard of change; ‘children are the future’ and all that. For children, ‘popular’ means something different. A NEW DEFINITION OF POPULAR My daughter is a Sims fan. As I ambled past the PC she announced that she’d discovered how to become popular on Sims 3. Since she’s a little too young to be playing Sims…

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  • The Influence of The Lovely Bones on Modern Literature

    The Influence of The Lovely Bones on Modern Literature

    The emphasis in the First Golden Age [of children’s literature] was very much on being healthy in mind and body – if a child became sick, he or she usually got well as part of their story. Today’s reader has no such encouragement. There is an alarming trend in what has been termed “sick-lit” which seems to wallow in the…

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  • The River Between Us by Richard Peck

    The River Between Us by Richard Peck

    The River Between Us is a middle grade novel by American writer Richard Peck.

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  • Carrie Storytelling Techniques

    Carrie Storytelling Techniques

    This is a remake of a 1976 movie based on Stephen King’s 1974 (breakout) novel, Carrie. Critics don’t like this new one much. The criticism is mostly that the remake was unnecessary because the first adaptation was so good. The original has a slower, more sinister pace and the main thing the reboot did was to add the social media…

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  • Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (2015)

    Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (2015)

    Me And Earl And The Dying Girl is a metafictive coming-of-age film based on a young adult novel by the same name. The book is an example of ‘sick-lit‘. Greg […] is coasting through senior year of high school as anonymously as possible, avoiding social interactions like the plague while secretly making spirited, bizarre films with Earl, his only friend.…

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  • If I Stay by Gayle Forman Storytelling Tips

    If I Stay by Gayle Forman Storytelling Tips

    If I Stay by Gayle Foreman is a young adult novel published 2009. This book is beautifully plotted, and makes an excellent case study if writers are planning a story with an ‘alternating’ plot. WELCOME TO THE THIRD GOLDEN AGE This book is an excellent example of ‘The Third Golden Age Of Children’s Literature’, as described by Amanda Craig: The emphasis in…

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  • The Male Gaze In Children’s Literature

    The Male Gaze In Children’s Literature

    Meg Elison has written a McSweeneys post about The Gaze which strikes a chord. IF WOMEN WROTE MEN THE WAY MEN WRITE WOMEN. At The Guardian, Lindesay Irvine (incidentally, a man) responded to this spoof gender reversal with: Anyone who’s ever had a brush with cultural studies will be familiar with Laura Mulvey’s influential theory of the male gaze in…

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  • What’s behind the wide appeal of horrible, brooding, YA boyfriends?

    THE RECIPE FOR A YOUNG ADULT DARK PARANORMAL ROMANCE BOYFRIEND Handsome In a white kind of way Muscled but not too muscled — not like he works at it Well groomed and fairly nubile — not much body hair Remarkable eyes and gaze A bit older than the female protagonist A bit taller Maybe a bit richer (though sometimes he’s…

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  • Female Beauty In Young Adult Literature

    Female Beauty In Young Adult Literature

    There is a rule in literature that good women are good looking. Though many have tried, it’s actually really hard to subvert this ideology. Many have tried and failed, because the tropes associated with beauty are so damn appealing.

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