Dec 12, 2012
My Top 10 Blog Posts of 2012
It’s the end of the year, which means lists lists lists everywhere! I thought I’d post a different sort of list today, counting down the top 10 blog posts on my website in 2012. According to Google Analytics, these are the most-viewed posts I’ve written this year, so check out the links below. There may be some posts and discussions you missed.
But first! Interestingly, the top three most-viewed posts on my website in 2012 weren’t written in 2012 at all; they were:
3. I have numbers! Stats on LGBT Young Adult Books Published in the U.S. (Sept. 14, 2011 | Updated Sept. 15, 2011) — I still see this post referenced across the Internet, which is both exciting and a little trepidatious, because I made some errors and problematic labeling choices when I first wrote this post in one very late night of pie chart-making. If I ever have the time and data to update it more thoroughly…maybe I will.
2. Avoiding LGBTQ Stereotypes in YA Fiction, Part 1: Major LGBTQ Stereotypes (June 7, 2010) — I’m so happy this post is still getting traffic! Yay!
… and (drumroll) the Number 1 most popular post on my website in 2012 was …
1. My long-winded thoughts on reading “Mockingjay” (Aug. 27, 2010) — This is the one blog post that I receive specific emails about, usually from people who have read it and are grateful I didn’t trash Mockingjay. (For the record: I would never trash any novels by living writers here on my blog.)
Will these three posts continue to score high in 2013? Stay tuned. But for now, onto…
My Top 10 Blog Posts of 2012
10. YA Pride: 2012 LGBT YA Books, January-March (June 8, 2012) — Every Friday in June, I’ll be listing the YA novels first published in 2012 that include LGBT main characters. Today I’m covering books published in the first quarter: January through March. Next week I’ll list books published April-June; then July-September; and finally October-December. Before I present the first batch of books, I have a number of disclaimers/explanations that I hope you will read …
9. Queer women and (in)visibility (May 16, 2012) — Last Saturday…I heard a story on NPR’s Weekend All Things Considered about the impact of television on public opinions about gay people. Since I used to write about gay people on television, I was really interested in this piece, which featured an interview between host Guy Raz and Edward Schiappa, a professor of communications studies at the University of Minnesota. … So, this was a 5-minute piece on the radio. I knew that they couldn’t get too deeply into the nuances of LGBT representation on television. But you know what pissed me off? It basically dismissed — and then erased — women from the dialogue.
8. 10 Thoughts on The Hunger Games Movie (Mar. 26, 2012) ((As you can see, Hunger Games still brings it.)) — 1. I went into it as a fan of the books, which means I expected that I would like the books more. I did. That’s not unusual for me, though, because I’m more of a book person than a movie person. The intimacy and intensity of the reading experience pretty much always outweighs two hours in a dark theater for me. However, 2. I thought the movie was pretty good! I thought it was well-paced and visually intriguing, and the cast did a good job.
7. Being conscious about gender (Jan. 10, 2012) — I, too, am a feminist. And I’m a lesbian. I’ve been thinking about gender as a lived experience for a while, especially because I have plenty of friends who aren’t traditionally feminine. I would have expected that in my writing, I wouldn’t fall back on traditional Western beliefs about passivity and femininity.
6. Heteronormativity, fantasy, and Bitterblue – Part 2 (Nov. 29, 2012) — Anyone who has read my novels should know that I believe YES, it can be totally believable to have same-sex relationships in a fantasy novel. BUT — and there’s a big but here — the world in which same-sex relationships exist must be carefully constructed. Because the average reader of today’s fiction lives in the real world in which the vast majority of people do not believe that gay people could live happy lives during the Middle Ages, a fantasy novel set in a medieval-type world has to deal with two big hurdles if it’s to include same-sex characters who aren’t oppressed.
5. Presenting … the ADAPTATION cover! (Mar. 15, 2012) — For Adaptation, I sent my editor a sample of covers I liked and suggested some cover concepts. I wasn’t sure if my publisher would use them or not, but since I had a clear idea of a symbolic image that I thought might work, I figured I might as well share it just in case. I was thrilled that they went with one of my ideas! And I absolutely love the designer’s interpretation of the concept I suggested. I think it conveys exactly the mood I was going for.
4. (My) Top 10 Sources of Inspiration: A (sort of) tongue-in-cheek list (Jan. 16, 2012) ((I think of this post as my secret hit, because there wasn’t much buzz about it when I posted it, but it’s a steady draw, probably because it’s search-engine friendly. Oh no, I didn’t do that on purpose or anything. 😉 )) — 10. The 4-Mile Walk to the Frozen Yogurt Shop. When people ask me how to get around writer’s blocks, I’m always tempted to answer cheekily: “Walk around the block.” But what I really mean is, go for a long walk. Go for the walk thinking that you’re going to get some fresh air, clear your head, get some exercise, anything except the problem you’re facing in your writing. Where I live, it’s about two miles to the frozen yogurt shop in the next town over. Sometimes I walk all the way there, listening to music or a podcast on my iPod. …
3. Writing about lesbians when you’re not a lesbian (Jan. 31, 2012) — Last week someone emailed me this question: “I am writing a short story about a lesbian main character … and almost had it finished when I had a panic attack. I was at a conference talking about my story when a lesbian told me she would never take it seriously because I wasn’t a lesbian and I can’t know what that feels like. But to me that love is love and normal and just like love between anyone else except for that one guy back home and his sheep. I don’t want to do this wrong. I want their love to be the reason my MC survives this ordeal but I don’t want to offend either. What can I do?”
2. Heteronormativity, fantasy, and Bitterblue – Part 1 (Nov. 28, 2012) ((This is pretty impressively ranked, because I’m using data from Jan. 1-Dec. 11, 2012 for this list, so the Bitterblue posts have only had a couple of weeks online. I had no idea it would draw such an audience!)) — Earlier this week I read a post discussing Kristin Cashore’s Bitterblue on School Library Journal‘s blog Someday My Printz Will Come, which is devoted to analyzing YA books that librarians think may or may not be contenders for the Printz Award. This post went up on Oct. 29, so I’m a bit behind, but I couldn’t stop thinking about it, so I decided to blog about it. In the post, the blogger, Sarah Couri, wrote that she enjoyed Bitterblue as a fan, but thought it was too flawed to be a serious Printz contender. All well and good. The interesting part of the post, to me, was the discussion in the comments that followed.
1. Writing About Kissing (Apr. 30, 2012) — Then I read a book called The Difference Between You and Me by Madeleine George and I thought, damn, that is the best example of fictional kissing I’ve ever read in a YA novel. And because I’m a writer, I started to poke at what exactly made that fictional kissing scene so good. Why did it work so well? That made me pull out other YA novels that I remembered also contained excellent examples of fictional kissing, in order to dissect them from a writerly perspective. And I discovered that there is quite a variety of fictional kissing, from which we can learn some lessons.
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So there you have it: my most popular blog posts of 2012. Going by this list, I see you enjoy it when I blog about gender, lesbians, anything Hunger Games, or kissing. I will endeavor to continue to serve your interests in 2013. 😉