When I wrote all of the Hot
& Nerdy novellas, I wrote my nerds the way I see them. They have nerdy
pursuits and that is part of how they think, talk, and live. In the first
trilogy, I used quotes from Star Wars (â€śDo or do not. There is no try.â€ť) and
Star Trek. I created an entire world for a fictional video game. The purpose of
all of this was to create well-developed characters. However, it did require
quite a bit of research.
In HIS DREAM ROLE, the
hero, Free, is an actor. He loves playing a role because he can pretend to be
someone else. Because of his love of acting and his natural tendency to be
extremely shy, he uses movie quotes as part of his everyday language.
Iâ€™ve always envied people who can pull out movie quotes for any given situation.
While I love movies and TV, Iâ€™ve never had a brain for memorizing lines. If I
hear a quote, Iâ€™ll usually be able to recognize it as a quote and maybe even
know what movie itâ€™s from. But Iâ€™ve never quoted from a movie in my real life â€“
except Yoda. I do use that quote in my house all the time. And then my kids
throw it right back at me.
When I created Free, I knew that he had to quote movies. He uses those quotes
because as he says, â€śIf I use someone elseâ€™s words, I wonâ€™t embarrass myself.â€ť
So as he works through his nervousness, I had to find quotes to fit the situation.
My biggest worry with including all of these quotes is that people might get
lost in them. If theyâ€™re familiar with the movie or show or character, theyâ€™d
get the reference and it would almost be like an inside joke. But what if the
reader wasnâ€™t familiar with the show or character? Would he or she feel left
out? Would not knowing pull a reader out of my book?
As a reader, Iâ€™m usually okay without knowing everything. Iâ€™ll figure out what I
can from context and leave it at that, but sometimes, Iâ€™ll come across something
and I really want to understand the full context, so Iâ€™ll go look it up. This
isnâ€™t something I want my readers to have to do though. So when I chose my
quotes for Free, I tried to make them obvious. Words that would fit the
conversation at hand that would make sense even if it wasnâ€™t a movie quote.
Hopefully, Iâ€™ve done my job.
In addition to all of this, using pop culture references can date a book. So
again, as I chose quotes, I tended to use classic movies that were really
popular. That way, even if the reader doesnâ€™t recognize the quote, he or she
might know of the movie or TV show. I didnâ€™t worry too much about whether it
would date my book. No matter what I write, unless I leave out all technology
references and all pop culture references, in ten years, my books will be
outdated. Thatâ€™s just the way life is. I trust that readers are smart enough to
figure that out.
How do you feel about pop culture references in books?
Free Mitchell loves the theater. In his dreams heâ€™s the one taking the
spotlight. But so far heâ€™s played against character by following in his fatherâ€™s
footsteps as an investment banker. When heâ€™s masquerading as Dr. Who or Sherlock
Holmes to help his brother, he feels he can escape his shy, dorky persona. But
nothingâ€™s prepared him to play boyfriend to a gorgeous girl like Samantha Wolf.
Samantha isnâ€™t quite sure what to think of Free. Heâ€™s cute, sweet, and quirky,
but his outlandish costumes make him seem crazy. However, it turns out Sam has a
soft spot for theater nerds. And the more time they spend together, the more
their steamy romance begins to take center stage. Only problem is, there doesnâ€™t
seem to be a script. And itâ€™s anyoneâ€™s guess how this one will end.
Hot & Nerdy #6
Buy on: | Kindle |
BN.com | Kobo | iTunes/iBooks
3 comments posted.
I like pop culture references. They add to the essence of the characters and assist in building relationships, which is fun.
(Kathleen Bylsma 12:35pm December 23, 2015)
To be perfectly honest, I am afraid I would miss the intended meaning of a great number of comments from pop culture. I would not object to their use however.
(Gladys Paradowski 1:59am December 27, 2015)