I’m watching my daughter start to face those struggles we all encounter at that certain age–puberty. It’s more challenging that I’d expected to watch her try to figure things out for herself, to fail at some things after working so hard. It’s also difficult to see all my own faults showing up in her and knowing that she’s going to have some of the same struggles I had if she wants to overcome them.
I think it’s because the pubescent and teenage years are so difficult for all of us, so charged with emotion, that writers of all times have chosen to write about young heroes. Look at Romeo and Juliet. C.S. Lewis and his four young protagonists. Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Great Expectations.
Time and again, writers try to delve into that turbulent coming of age. I don’t know if we write because we wish we could bring ourselves back to those pivotal moments, perhaps to make better choices, or simply because writers love emotion, and young adults are so full of that. I do find, however, that in my own writing, some of my favorite characters are my young ones.
Heh, maybe I should actually try reading The Hunger Games, that my daughter has already read.