This post is dedicated to anyone who has ever felt the urge to stand up and shout, “I volunteer as tribute!”
First off, congratulations! This is a worthy desire, and we applaud your courage, self-sacrifice, and willingness to suffer for our entertainment.
Consider this a public service warning, lest you enter into this position unwittingly. The life of a YA Speculative Fiction heroine isn’t all white chocolate lattes and victory marches. Oh it may seem so heart-aching and glorious when you read about it in a book, but if you actually have to live it, well, it’s full of grit, anguish, and crazy amounts of responsibility. Not the sort of thing to jump into lightly.
Still interested? Well then, prepare yourself to be blessed with a life of …
I’m sorry but you must face it, choosing to sign on as a YA heroine is choosing to enjoy endure deal with a life of angst and drama. Maybe it’s the teenage hormones, or the fact that you spend most of your time alternating between battling for your life and navigating the troubled waters of flirting with the cute boy next door/brooding antihero who’s been thrown into this mess with you, but either way, you should be prepared to spend your days in emotional turmoil.
Life is full of questions for a teen, and even more so for a YA heroine. Hard, life altering questions, such as, “Do my powers make me a monster?” “Who put me in charge?” and “Should I say yes if he asks me out?”
Supreme Knowledge … that, or the adults are somehow idiots
Don’t ask me how but your status as a YA heroine will fill you with a knowledge, understanding, and ability to see to the heart of the matter that none of the adults around you will be able to match. You will be able to stand beside the most hardened battle general and point out the flaw in his plan … or unearth the only solution to the problem that stumps all wiser, older heads.
Don’t worry! It’s not based on training or study. You don’t have to go to YA heroine school! It’s just pure “out of the box,” “new to the scene,” “crazy as all get out” thinking.
You got this.
This one is somewhat linked to the one above, but your sudden, life-altering wisdom and abilities will result in you assuming a position of power that in reality would be utterly insane to give to a teenager.
Thought being entrusted with the key to the family vehicle was big? How about armies!
Yeah … how about not.
But it’s okay because we have the wise words of Uncle Ben to help us deal with this sort of thing, “With great power comes great responsibility.”
Wait … responsibility to do what? Hold on, Uncle Ben, isn’t there more to that thought?
You knew this one was coming, didn’t you? That’s right. The infamous love triangle that we all hate so much to love … (Personally, I’m not a fan.)
But don’t worry. This love triangle isn’t a shallow thing at all. It’s not based on your looks, because as a YA heroine, we’ve already been told several times by the author that you are perfectly ordinary. Not one of those drop-dead gorgeous girls that other girls love to hate.
No, it’s your snarky comments and the “I can do it” attitude that battles with your “angsty” neediness that will garner the attention of not just one but two guys who will fall hopelessly in love with you by chapter three.
One will no doubt be the brooding, anti-hero bad boy, while the other will the clean cut, Captain America-type, boy next door who has a heart of gold. Choosing between them will be the hardest decision that you have to make in the course of the novel, despite having to fight for your life, command armies, and help the grown-ups figure out what’s really going on!
In summary …
If after all of that, you are still determined to be a YA heroine, I guess there really isn’t much I can do to dissuade you, so I’ll have to content myself with offering you a salute and look forward to digging into the novel.
– Your Favorite YA Spec Fic Heroines
Your turn! What are some other things a YA Spec Fic Heroine should expect?
And who are some of your favorite YA heroines?