When I look at everything I write I realise that in some shape or form, Love is at the core of pretty much every story I create. The funny thing is, I don’t write romance or at least not yet, but still it is undeniable. In my first book Darkly Wood, you can’t miss it. Daisy loves Benjamin and I’m not giving anything away there. However, that book is much more than a love story. When I look at Larry Flynn which followed Darkly, it might not be as obvious but it is still there.
Love takes many forms and whether it is the absence of love, romantic love or familial love, it seems that love is such a fundamental part of our human need, that writers simply cannot avoid it. If you can find a book without reference to it directly or indirectly I think I may be gobsmacked. Even if it is the absence of love, that in itself focusses on the writers unavoidable inclusion of what we all crave, have, or lack in our lives.
It was a thought provoking epiphany for me because I never considered how central this emotion is to most books, not just mine. I write very much character driven stories so maybe I should have spotted the obvious long before now. Consider any book you have ever read and try not to find love at the heart of the book. If one thinks of themes that may be far from love like revenge and hate, typically they stem from a place of love for the character. To go to the extreme opposite one has to contextualise and so love appears. In its absence, the void that fills the pages and our characters exists only by our understanding that it is missing – so again it appears.
Maybe I’m thinking too hard. Maybe I’ve had too much coffee, but am I alone or have you ever thought about this one too?