I'm going to be a little bit indulgent today and just enthuse about some tropes that I love and want to see more of.
Okay, if you know me at all, you know that brother things really get to me. Maybe it's because I have several of those myself, and it's not really JUST brother things, sister things hit me really hard too, but you see more brother things.
Dear god fiction is saturated with romance all the time. And I like romance, to be honest. It's pretty A+ when it's done right, it can leave me breathless and I can be happy with that. You almost never get to see what comes after though.
Give me a family and make me ship the parents. Or write your romance but make the protagonist's relationships with their parents and siblings just as important. Or hell, write an asexual character and make all of their important relationships family and friendships, just give me more family dynamics.
Something Supernatural did right was give us Sam and Dean, two brothers who are super close to one another and willing to sacrifice for each other. To an unhealthy degree sometimes. They have pretty much said screw the world at points to keep each other safe and breathing.
I want more than this, though.
I grew up in a really big family, and we're all still close to this day. Four generations of us meeting up for every major holiday, calling regularly to check in, keeping each other in the ring of gossip. It's amazing, but it also brings with it its little bits of conflict.
Some of us are bossy, some are just plain rude, and there are old family conflicts that can come up at the drop of a hat. At the end of the day, though, we're all on the same team and everyone knows that. We all have our relatives that we prefer to hang out with at family gatherings, we all have our pet peeves, we all even have petty little rivalries, and it's amazing how intricate that can get.
It's also amazing how little of that I tend to see in fiction. They had a lot of good examples in Weeds, between the mom and her kids, the kids and each other, the uncle that lives with them, the kids and the uncle...that was pretty awesome.
Siblings fight. They want the same things and sometimes they can't both have them. They fuss and gripe and would kick an ass or two for each other and it's beautiful. I just would love to see more of that and less of 'the protagonist brings her boyfriend home and her brother threatens him because that's what brothers do'.
In most YA, the parents aren't even in the story they're either horribly irresponsible and don't care what's going on in the lives of their kids of they're just dead or something. It wouldn't hurt to have the parents around and giving some actual good advice in these books.
Alright, I'm done with that ramble. Thanks for bearing with me <3
Megan R. Miller