Brooding YA Hero – Becoming a Main Character (Almost) As Awesome As Me

I am the brooding hero found in all your favorite books, from that lush, dramatic fantasy you adored, to the contemporary, swoony romance that made you giggle.

Brooding YA Hero was a concept dreamed up by Pittsburgh native Carrie DiRisio on a dark, stormy clichéd night for Twitter.  Broodie McHotpants, descendant of such figures as Romeo, Mr. Darcy, and a thousand literary vampires is the self-obsessed, gorgeous, mysterious, arrogant jerk who’s been the ‘hero’ of countless YA novels through out the land.  Broodie gifted his followers with such pearls of wisdom as It’s a well known fact that every successful fictional monarchy accidentally misplaces a princess every century or so.  

Now Broodie, finding himself bored and feeling rejected by a lack of Authors using him at just that moment, has written a guide for all us lesser mortals on the Art of Becoming A Main Character. He carefully catalogues the importance of Adjectives and possessing Gem Stoned Eyes. How the ultimate goal is a trilogy of books that Hollywood will turn into four movies. He even dares a trip to the Deleted Files Hall to meet characters who never made the final manuscripts to help us learn from their mistakes. Alas, his evil ex-girlfriend, Blondie DaMeanie, is out to thwart the enterprise because you know she’s Just Evil. Or is she?  Could it be there’s more to Blondie and even Broodie than meets the eye?

Aided with terrific illustrations/comics by Linnea Gear Brooding YA Hero is so on point and cutting in its dissection of the clichés of the genre that it garners equal points for groans and laughs. The more you read the more you realize that while some of the tropes in question (high school cliques, for example) may only apply to YA fiction, a great many other problems identified by DiRisio do not. Like the way White Saviors are glorified and how anything other than Anglo-Saxon cultures are too often fetishized in fantasy and syfy novels. How female characters too often demonstrate strength and independence by setting themselves up as ‘Not Like All The Other Girls’ and heaving contempt on traditional femininity and their female peers. DiRisio asks us to stretch our minds not only to what YA fiction is and can be, but toward the realms and boundaries of stories in general. And it’s funny too!

Brooding YA Hero: Becoming a Main Character (Almost) as Awesome as Me
Carrie DiRisio
Illustrated by Linnea Gear

About Winnefred Ann Frolik (155 Articles)
Winnefred Ann Frolik (Winnie for short) was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She completed the International Baccleareate program at Schenley High School and then attended the University of Pittsburgh where she completed a double major in English Literature and Creative Writing. After graduation she spent a number of years working in the non-profit sector and it was during that phase in her life she moved to D.C.  Winnie co-wrote a book on women in the U.S. Senate with Billy Herzig.  She enrolled in a baking program in culinary school and worked in food services for a while. She currently works in personal services while writing for Woman Around Town and doing other freelance writing projects including feeble personal attempts at fiction. Her brother is a reporter in Dayton, Ohio so clearly there are strong writing genes in the family.  She lives in Pittsburgh, PA, with two demanding cats.