Writing Time Thursdays - Stereotypes (And Why Realistic Fiction Needs Them)

Yes, yes, you read that right. The title does indeed say "Why realistic fiction needs them." Yes, I do believe that realistic fiction needs stereotypes, to make it realistic.
Here's why.

1.) The Lorraine Benson factor.
Who's Lorraine Benson? Why does she get her own factor?
A: Lorraine Benson is the mean girl in The Assassin. You know, the typical, blonde mean girl. Like the ones in the movie (which I've never actually seen). She's the daughter of a billionaire, gets the cute boys, and she's shallow.
Now, I live in a town full of middle to upper class families. Poverty is almost nonexistent in my town. I joke that my school is the rich druggies school because kids have all this money to do with whatever they want. Kids get cars for Christmas at my school. But, I didn't. There are plenty of Lorraine Bensons at my school. In fact, you can probably find a Lorraine Benson in every American high school. They're all over the place, which is how they become stereotypes in stories.
If the stereotypes exist in real life, why can't they exist in books too?
2.) Hot Boys Let Their Looks Go to Their Head
It's true, I've seen it happen. Some of the best looking guys at my school are a bunch of assholes because they know their looks will save them in any situation, at least when they're in trouble with a girl. My school certainly can't be the only one with guys like this.
3.) The quiet one did it....
I believe that the quiet ones are the ones to watch. I really do.... My best friend, Courtney, talks to about five people, she's just shy. I've had people ask me if she can talk.... I swear, she's a evil genius, well, we both are. My ex-boyfriend (never thought I'd have to write that :P) is quiet too. And he's in the army, and loves guns. He's this 6'5" guy in the army....I swear, some day, the quiet kid will do it.... Just you wait.

See, there are plenty of stereotypes that we know of in books that show up in real life. In my opinion, real life created the stereotypes, not the books.

love, lala

1 Comment:

Jack said...

Great post, Laura! Stereotypes is what makes the book world go round. I see them all the time in my daily travels, to and from the city on public transit. It's funny sometimes because some people are typical! Seriously! Yet, after sometime of peeling back the layers of protection on them, they still are somewhat human.

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