Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Man's Love

After nearly two weeks of silence, I am back to the world of blogging! I feel refreshed and rejuvenated from my weekend in Yosemite National Park, and I feel incredibly honored that I got to be with two great friends during the festivities of their recent wedding day. How can you NOT be inspired in a place like Yosemite, and how can you be anything but humbled by the love radiating from both Mary Schwab and her new husband, Scott Siner?

During the ceremony, I had a great view of the groom's expression. From my vantage point in the back of the bridesmaid line--as one of two 5'8" bridesmaids in the midst of a 4'10" to 5' wedding party--I was absolutely overcome by the love and adoration I saw glowing in Scott's often-moist eyes.

It got me thinking... A man's love is so different from a woman's love, yet it is truly one of the most powerful forces on the planet. Strong and protective, loyal and self-sacrificing, it is the type of energy that can--and often does--move mountains.

I think this experience--and its resulting burst of inspiration--is exactly what I needed for my current work in progress. The project I'm working on is the sequel to the manuscript I'm currently shopping to agents, and this time, I'm writing from the male protagonist's point of view.

The prospect of writing as a male has me both excited and terrified. I've never written as a guy before, so I'm a little worried I'm going to make a mess of it. However, this weekend DOES leave me feeling a little more confident, and I think I'll be fine if I can just remember to make my characters love each other THIS much:

I'd also love YOUR help. Have you read any great romances--particularly YAs--from a male point of view lately? Have you ever switched genders in first-person? And do you have any tips or tricks for a first-time gender bender?

Thanks in advance for your advice!


Charlee said...

Ahhh, That is sweet there is nothing like a wedding to bring out the romantic side :)

Jenna Cooper said...

Shiver switches POVs between a guy and a girl falling in love. You should check that one out.

Anita said...

Jenna's suggestion is great. That was the one I was going to offer. What beautiful wedding pics! And YES, the love is so obvious between them. How sweet. :) Congrats to them! Thanks for sharing this lovely post; you've inspired me to go back and skim over the romantic places in my WiP.

Coral said...

First off, I think you're right. There's something enthralling about the strength of a man's love, especially since so much emphasis is put on them to lock emotions away.

Switching first person PoVs would be tricky. Part of the way you let readers know about PoV shifts is by using the character name, and it would be tough to work that into the start of every chapter. I guess what you could do is have either a graphic header for each of them that you use in front of their chapters or you could just have their names at the start of the chapter.

Another thing you could do is switch one character with first and use third for others. Not YA, but a book that does this well is Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.

PS - That second picture is jaw-dropping gorgeous. :)

Eliza Faith said...

My novel's protagonist is a male. It's definitely fun to get inside a guy's head.

If you want to read a great male voice check out Looking for Alaska by John Green. He's an amazing writer.

Sophie Li said...

HOLY WOW the photos are GORGEOUS!

The male voice would be very interesting to attempt because like you said we are SO different in certain ways. And I think if you really get into the character you will pull it off just fine.

During RP sometimes a male playing a female or vice versa can come off as 'odd.' So just be extra careful that you don't come off as 'Spam' (mixed meat - lol)

You can do it!

Girl Parker said...

Can't offer any gender-writing advice, but I LUV the photos in this blog. Really beautiful, LisaAnn!!

LisaAnn said...

Yay! Thanks for your suggestions, everyone, and thanks so much for your photo compliments as well. It was a pain to lug my camera around--and to hide it in the back of the church during the ceremony--but I'm so glad I did. Yosemite gets all the credit, though; it's pretty impossible to screw up a shot there. ;)

I have heard from a few others that "Shiver" is definitely a book I should get my hands on, so I think I will download it tonight. Thanks, Jenna and Anita!

And thank you for your POV suggestions, Coral. I was originally thinking I might switch between the guy and girl during this book, but I think I've decided to let the guy tell the entire story, so hopefully this will make things much easier for me.

I'm so glad you mentioned "Looking for Alaska," Eliza Faith! I just finished that one in the fall, and you're right. It's brilliant, and I love how REAL Green's boys are. (BTW, I had no idea what the count-down was until it was over. When it finally hit me, I got serious goosebumps. Genius!)

You've totally nailed my fear, Sophie Li. Girls are so vocal, and we think sooo much. Always obsessing, always thinking about our feelings, always worrying, etc.

My male protag is very observant and deep. I stole his characterization from my hubby, so that makes things a little easier for me, but I'm really having to try hard to keep him from thinking about his feelings too much. I'm trying to make him NOTICE everything, but I'm trying really hard not to internalize his struggles. He just DOES things, you know... Doesn't sit around and consider them forever like my female protag. ;)

LTM said...

oh, yes yes yes!!! I just finished "Where She Went" by Gayle Forman! It's the sequel to "If I Stay," and it's written from the male POV. It is sooo good. Intense and emotional. I read them both in almost two days. Highly recommend~

And oh, those pix are amazing. LOVE~ <3

Jennifer Shirk said...

Beautiful pics!!
Most of the YA's I've read were written in the first person so no male POV.
I think Nora Roberts did a really good job with the male pov in her Bride Quartet series--all the men were a bit different too. One was kind of geeky, one wasn't much of a talker, the others were kind of betas. Good reads. :)

LisaAnn said...

Oh yes, I actually saw "Where She Went" while I was in the airport the other day... So glad to hear you liked it, LTM... I was definitely intrigued! And thanks for your suggestion, Jennifer; I'm actually reading "Northern Lights" by Nora Roberts right now, which is written in the male POV as well... I will definitely look for the Bride Quartet series, too!

Jennifer Snyder said...

First off, wonderful photos! I love the classic look of black and white photos. Second, I wrote my novel from a male POV and I found it to a lot easier than writing from a female POV. You get to skip over all the whining, dramma induced moments that seem to over take a lot of female POV characters. I loved it!

LisaAnn said...

Wow, how awesome to hear that, Jennifer! I think I will like this too as soon as I get used to it. Don't be surprised if I hit you up for advice sometime soon! ;)

Jennifer Snyder said...

Ask away and hopefully I'll be able to help! My email is on my contact page.

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