Don’t you just love our new look here on YA Stands? I know I do! I’m also extremely excited for our Twitter
chat tonight at 9 p.m. EST, using hashtag #yastandschat (shameless plug). You never know what crazy things writers will
talk about, especially YA writers, so be sure to drop in and say hello!
As for my post today, I want to talk
a little bit about flirting. Here’s the official
to court triflingly or act amorously
without serious intentions; play at love; coquet. That’s a mouthful, isn’t it? But it is very true. It’s also something 98% of us do
without even thinking about, like a smile here, a hug there, laughing at a joke
that really isn’t that funny. So when it
comes to writing these flirtatious moments it should be second nature, right?
Well, not so much, at least not for
If you’ve read any of my other
posts, you know I’m a huge/hopeless romantic. And while I have flirted plenty in my day, I’ve
really had to pay attention to how my characters flirt, because they are not doing it intentionally, but
Every glance, every touch, every interaction these characters share, has
to have a purpose. And no, the purpose
cannot just be because you need them doing something while they’re talking. It needs to be something that helps move the
story forward. It’s a writer’s tool, just
Flirting must also be organic. It must develop naturally. You can’t go having the guy come up and grab
the girl around the waist, swinging her in the air, if they’ve only just met. But you could have him brush her hand as he
passes her in the hall. It should
progress in a way that makes the reader want to know what the characters are
going to do next. Like whether the guy
will finally kiss the girl, or will he dance with someone else to make her
jealous (yes, boys are stupid and will do things like that, but then again, so
I often feel like I’m in a hurry to
get my characters to the climax of the story then have to go back and slow
things down in order to pull the reader along more gradually. In one of my stories, there was a whole chapter
added later because I jumped from the boy and girl hardly knowing each other to
a heated kiss. The kissing scene was fun
to write, but didn’t make sense in the sequence of events for the characters.
So, do your characters flirt naturally?