Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Welcome Wednesday: Trish Milburn's Take on Lessons from Teen Love

Today we welcome made-of-awesome adult and YA writer, Trish Milburn to the Welcome Wednesday spot. Our theme is "Teen Lover, Where are Youuuu?" and we're talking about the lessons we learned from teen love. Take it away, Trish...

The Love You Least Expect

There’s something very powerful about falling in love in your teens. Even if it doesn’t end up being the forever kind of love, and it often isn’t, it certainly feels like that at the time. I think that’s why I still really love teen-centric stories, whether they’re books, TV shows or movies. You get to see and experience vicariously that intensity of first love all over again.

Interestingly, my two favorite kinds of teen romance stories are the “opposites attract” and “best friends fall in love” storylines. They suck me in every time.

One of my favorite opposites-attract stories is the movie 10 Things I Hate About You with Julia Stiles and the late Heath Ledger. Here you have the story of the super-smart but snarky Kat Stratford falling for the bad boy Patrick Verona. And even though Patrick is initially paid to get Kat to go out with him so her younger sister can date, he finds there’s a lot more to Kat than her thorny exterior. He starts falling for her, so it’s even more devastating for them both when Kat finds out the truth. Thankfully, they work it out in the end, but the movie shows the importance of not lying to the person you like and not assuming your true love can’t possibly someone way different than you.

Another movie that falls into this category is The Prince and Me, again with Julia Stiles, this time starring opposite Luke Mably. It’s actually a mixture of the opposites attract and friends falling in love types of stories. Julia plays Paige, a farmer’s daughter and pre-med student in Wisconsin who is very serious about her studies. Luke plays Eddie, another college student who is actually a prince in hiding and seemingly only interested in girls and having a good time. They initially become friends, but it blossoms into something more. Again, a lie comes between them when Paige discovers Eddie is a prince. Can you get more opposite than a girl who grew up on a farm in Wisconsin and the Prince of Denmark?

A new show that I’m currently enjoying is Jane by Design. Jane is a teenage girl who, through a case of mistaken identity, ends up living a double life as a smart high school student and an assistant to a bigwig in the fashion world. While she has potential love interests in the hot jock at school and the playboy designer at work, I’m really hoping that toward the end of the show’s run she realizes that the perfect guy for her is actually her best friend, Billy. He is the best friend ever, helping her conceal her double life any way he can, listening when she needs to vent, giving her a shoulder to cry on during the hard times. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that he’s cute. I personally think the strongest love stories are the ones that start with friendship, so I suspect/hope that Jane and Billy are destined for each other.

Trish Milburn’s first book in the new Coven trilogy, White Witch, will be available soon from Bell Bridge Books. It’s the story of Jax Pherson, a dark witch on the run from her coven because she wants nothing more than to live a normal life as a normal teenage girl. Trish previously published two YA titles under the name Tricia Mills, Heartbreak River and Winter Longing.

You can learn more about Trish by visiting her website, checking her out on Facebook, and on Twitter

Thanks so much for stopping by, Trish! I must admit I loved me some Heath Ledger in 10 Things I Hate about You and Julia Stiles is great in everything she does.  

Okay, now it's your turn, gentle readers. Are you a fan of either of these types of romances? What is it about them that you think makes them work so well?


Melissa Landers said...

I looooooooooved 10 Things I Hate About You. A YA-ish retelling of the taming of the shrew? What's not to like?

When it comes to romance, I'm drawn to plots where the hero and heroine are old friends. In my first Sultry Springs romance, the couple, though they're estranged at the beginning of the novel, were best friends as children. There's no substitute for that level of connection.

Theresa said...

I love both movies! Can watch them over and over. And I'm a huge fan of Jane By Design. Trish you have good taste. lol.

I agree with Melissa, I like when the characters already are friends or at least have known each other for some time. I'm not a fan of insta-love unless it's done really well. I'm a fan of the buildup and you don't really get that when the love happens so quickly.

Trish Milburn said...

Melissa, I totally agree. I think couples have to be friends too, so if you're starting out already being friends that's a definite bonus.

Trish Milburn said...

LOL, Theresa. Isn't it cool when you see other people liking the same pop culture stuff as you? I recently got on Pinterest, and I love stumbling across people's boards about TV and movies and seeing ones I'd forgotten about that I love too.

Lea Nolan said...

I love the unexpected couplings too, it's nice when supposed opposites realize they're perfect for each other. That's what happened in my real life - my loner scientist husband and I-gregarious social scientist/writer chick-couldn't be more different. I'm also a sucker for stories like Pretty in Pink where the outsider girl catches the eye of the hot, popular guy. I know its cliche and girls should aspire to be happy with who they are and not want to fit in with the cool kids, but who doesn't want Prince Charming/Blane McDonough to sweep you off your feet?

Lorie Langdon said...

I *love* JANE BY DESIGN! It's one of my favorite shows right now. The chemistry between Jane and her best friend Billy is smokin'! So much fun. :)
Thanks for stopping by. Great post!

Trish Milburn said...

Lea, your story sounds like mine. When hubby and I met in college, he was a physics major and I was in the journalism program. I was way more outgoing than him, still am, but we've been together more than 22 years now.

And I am all for girls standing on their own two feet, not having to depend on a guy, but I can't help loving those Cinderella stories too.

Trish Milburn said...

Hi, Lorie. Isn't it awesome? I think I'll watch this week's episode while I'm exercising today. Thank goodness for TiVo! I'm also liking the hints at possible romance between Jane's brother and Rita, the guidance counselor. Cute.

Natalie V said...

Oh, 10 Things was a lovely movie. And I'm still old enough to hold some John Hughes scars (Why, oh, why didn't Andie end up with Duckie in Pretty in Pink?) But yes, there's so much power in those first loves. Great post, Trish!

Trish Milburn said...

Natalie, I'm totally in the John Hughes generation. I get nostalgic every time I see Molly Ringwald. :)

CareyCorp said...

Hi Trish - sorry I'm late to the party. I'm a huge fan of your contemporary YA. And I'm also totally enamored with Jane by Design. :) I love the good guys and Billy is about as good as they get. :)

Thanks for being our guest.

Trish Milburn said...

Hey, Carey. No worries! I drag myself late to blogs all the time. I need about 100 hours in a day! Thanks for your kind words about my contemporary YA. Hopefully I'll be able to get more of it out there soon.

Billy is awesome, isn't he?

Tameka said...

10 Things is one of my favorite movies of all time. I love really good verbal sparring in a romance, especially when the female protagonist is smart and sarcastic. Also the late Heath Ledger being a dreamboat doesn't hurt! Great post!