Our Masterpieces...Err, Our Novels

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

P is for...Peer Pressure

Controversial Song of the Day:  "Under Pressure" by Queen

For the entire month of April, we'll be participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Our theme for the month? CONTROVERSIAL TOPICS IN YA. Check out the link above for other awesome blogs participating.

Taken from cathykeir.co.uk
I'll let you in on a little secret. Sometimes on Twitter, I'll see that everyone loves a certain movie and/or actor, or hates a certain movie and/or actor--and I'll feel the EXACT opposite. What should I do? Go against the grain, or just keep quiet? More often than not, I do the latter.
See, even as a *mumbles age*-year-old woman, I still buckle under peer pressure. Of course, the affects of peer pressure reached its peak when I was a teenager--when I laughed at someone else's expense even when I was crying for them on the inside. Or when I used my mom as an excuse as to why I couldn't attend a party (especially when I knew that "bad things" would be at that party).
Both Quita and I see some of our "good" students do something silly all because their friends told them to. Peer pressure does not discriminate; it doesn't care about your gender, race, or class. As teens, we were ALL susceptible to it. And here are some novels that take on this topic:
Does peer pressure play a significant part in your writing? Were you easily influenced as a teen?


Carrie-Anne said...

My Atlantic City books have elements of social satire and spoof, so there is a fair amount of peer pressure, most prominently in my original generation (who came of age during the Forties). The title character of my handwritten magnum opus (my longest AC book) comes under a great deal of peer pressure from one of her best friends in particular in regards to making her sexual debut. Cinnimin has her own mind and remains a virgin longer than any of her friends, but she and her boyfriend become perhaps a bit too hung-up on the abstract, essentially meaningless concept of virginity and remain technical virgins even after they've had a number of children, just because they're not able to be officially married yet. Near the end of the third volume, she and her common-law husband finally properly go all the way.

Pam Harris said...

Thanks for sharing, Carrie-Anne. Your book sounds awesome! And hand-written? I bow down to you. :)

Beth Camp said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I write historical fiction so my first reaction is my writing reflects more social criticism than peer pressure, but now I'm thinking this is an interesting concept to use to develop motivation for my characters (I'm currently in the drafting stage), and to understand the setting/conflicts they faced in mid-19th Century Van Diemen's Land. Nice post and nice blog overall. Hi from Beth

Patricia Lynne said...

I remember moments of peer pressure in High school very well. Some I caved, others I didn't. I have to admit, sometimes when it comes to books, I go against everyone because I'm so tired of hearing about a book (like the Hunger Games. Everyone is gaga over it and I just don't feel like caring about it.)

Thinking about my writing and I have some characters that buckle under peer pressure. My one WIP, Snapshots, the MC often follows his friends because he already stands out and just wants to fit in. On the other hand, my book I've pubbed has a scene in the end where the MC's family could have buckled to peer pressure but did the opposite even though it ostracized them.

Marquita Hockaday said...

@Patricia, I hear you about getting tired of hearing about certain books. I was a Hunger Games fan when it was buzzed about but not SHOUTED about and now I'm pretty sick of it, too. I mean, I still think it's an awesome book and I liked the movie--just not as crazy about it as I was when it was not as hyped up. It's awesome that your pubbed book shows readers what to do when they might be in a position to be peer pressured.