Picture drawn by Maggie Stiefvater, 2009. Header made by S.F. Robertson, 2010.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ask Book Chic (16)

Kailia Sage asks "There are many stereotypes out there. What is one stereotype you wish could be taken out of books, YA and more? Why?"

I don't know. I'm one of those people that isn't really bothered by stereotypes, and most of the time, I don't even notice them. I just don't spend much time thinking about them. Stereotypes are rooted in truth, so if a novel has them, it doesn't automatically make it bad or somehow lazy on the author's part. That could be how the character came to them and it is a realistic portrayal because I imagine there are people out in the world who act exactly like that character.

Not that I think all authors should use stereotypes. What I like about YA is that there is enough variety that any stereotypes used are balanced out by original, complex characters.

Tara asks "What's your stance on books being adapted into films and what's your favourite adaptation?"

Readers should know by now that I'm an easygoing kind of person, and this translates into my views on books-to-films. I think it's AWESOME when a book I love gets made into a movie, even if there are changes, because it draws in a new audience and usually gets more people reading. This is great when the film in question is adapted from a YA novel.

Now, the whole changes thing. I spend time on the Meg Cabot boards and her adaptations thus far (Princess Diaries, 1-800-Where R You, and Avalon High) have changed a lot of things from the books (esp. 1-800, from what I heard). This angers a LOT of her fans, so I see a lot of "WHY DID THEY CHANGE THIS/LEAVE THIS OUT/DYE HER HAIR?!?!!? I'M GONNA KILL SOMEONE!!"

OK, so that's a bit exaggerated, but it's close to that. I'm not sure if it actually happened or not, but some users were going to scream at their TV while watching Avalon High for every change they made. I think that's a bit much.

Changes are inevitable. You can't translate a 300-page novel into a 90/120 minute film. If you followed everything down to the letter, you'd have a 10 hour movie and no one wants to see that. And even if you did follow things down to the letter and had that long movie, it would feel weird because stuff that works in a book doesn't always work in a movie and there would be some awkward places in the movie.

So I accept the changes, and actually welcome them. I don't want to see the same thing I read. If I did, I'd just keep my $10 and re-read the book and use my imagination. I'm here to see my favorite characters in real life, be surprised (hence changes), see a different interpretation of my favorite book, and have a good time.

My advice is to NEVER expect everything to be perfect and accept that changes will have to be made. View the movie as something that has some similarities to your favorite book. Everyone has different interpretations so the movie can't please everybody.

Anyway, my favorite adaptation would probably have to be the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants movies. I own both on DVD and just love them. The PD movies come in at a close second (those movies got me into Meg Cabot and YA!).

Liz asks "When you first started your blog, what was the most challenging aspect of getting established and gaining a consistent following?"

I'd say providing good, interesting content that would keep readers coming back for more. That's the main thing in getting established (along with just plugging away day after day) and gaining a following. But it's hard to do that. You have to mix things up so it isn't just all reviews and interviews (not that doing just those is boring, but you really have to make them interesting enough so that people don't mind just seeing those). You have to come up with unique ideas to set your blog apart from others.

But do things that intrigue you and that you can be excited about. Alea of Pop Culture Junkie loves graphic design (and may have a degree in it?) so her weekly features include Lookalikes and Hardcover vs. Paperback, both of which I love. They focus on book covers and the artistry that goes into them. So those features directly correlate with her interests. Do the same with your own blog. I love answering questions, so I do Ask Book Chic (it's kinda unhealthy, I'm sure, how much I love answering questions) every other week. You tap into your interests and try to find a way to include them in your blog. Once that happens, the followers will come and stick around. Good luck!

Also, Happy Thanksgiving all! I'm taking tomorrow off and there's no Fragment Friday this week (instead, I will hopefully have a review), so enjoy the time with your families. If you're an international person who doesn't celebrate Thanksgiving, well, have a wonderful Thursday then!

1 comment:

  1. I really enjoy reading these q&a's you do, I agree about books being turned into films, some people get very precious about it and want every single detail to be the same, but I just get really excited about seeing a film thats of a story I love!