Why I Was Passionate About Writing ELECTED


Hello!  As my first post I’m excited to explain why I was passionate about writing ELECTED.  First off, I woke up one morning with most of the story in my head.  I immediately grabbed a notepad and started jotting down the basic outline.  And the general themes from that first morning are the same themes that have carried through my entire writing of the manuscript. 

I am an environmentalist at heart.  Thus, I wanted to explore what our current world would be like if global warming came to fruition.  If our summers get hotter and our winters get colder and we had to withstand extreme temperatures that made inhabitation of certain countries impossible, what would people do?  If temperatures rose to unseen heights, what would happen to the planet as far as the arctics melting, flooding, earthquakes, etc.  That kind of devastation would leave people without resources.  Would countries turn against each other, crawling after limited raw materials like oil, food, and water?  Since this is also supposed to be a world set two hundred years in the future, I presumed that technology would have taken vast leaps.  Countries would use sophisticated weapons to attack each other for these resources, killing off even more of the population that hadn’t already been vanquished by the environmental crisis. 


So I took a step past this crisis and showed what the world might have done to finally combat the devastation.  Knowing that technology and human pollution caused the environment’s collapse, this world would come together with a series of peace accords that outlawed future technology creation of any kind.  The accords would also create isolation between countries since no one could seem to get along.  And the accords, written by many women, would make the responsibility of population growth and breeding the highest priority.  These accords would be so strict that they go over the line of repression.  That leaves the world in a place somewhat like the middle ages where women had a small role (to focus on pregnancy) and there was little technical machinery and minimal travel.  Yet, the interesting aspect of this future world is that they still have some pieces of manmade equipment, aka very cool techno gadgets, that they still use. 

I also wanted to show what the world thinks of tolerance and homosexuality hundreds of years into the future.  I think the United States is on the cusp of a civil rights movement with homosexuality.  We’ve gone through women’s rights, African American rights, and now is the time for gay rights.  Thus, I think a futuristic world would look past the intolerances that many people hold today.  They would not care who loves who.  But remember, this is also a world that wants to create babies for population growth.  So I wanted to explore what frustrations that would create for my characters, Aloy, Griffin, and Vienne.

And of course, as Stephanie Meyer of the Twilight series says, all good stories, no matter what they’re about, should have an element of LOVE included.  So above all else, ELECTED is a love story.  It’s a love triangle like so many other great love stories, but this time a woman is at the middle of a boy and girl, not two boys.  Both Griffin and Vienne are going after Aloy.  It’s not like Twilight with Bella being courted by Edward and Jacob.  And it’s not like Matched by Ally Condie where Cassia is fought over by Ky and Xander.  This is a young adult novel that explores tolerance and what that means two hundred years from now. 

I’d love your feedback on what you think of the three themes:  environmental crises, technology use, and a love story between two girls and a boy instead of the usual two boys and a girl. 

Thanks for reading, and I look forward to hearing from you!

1 Comment on Why I Was Passionate About Writing ELECTED

  • Raja says:
    July 31, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    That was one of the things that rlleay surprised me, too. But I have two teens and my daughter is a HUGE reader and she has never been to a blog site and if she finds an author it’s only to see what else they’ve written. I know that’s anecdotal, but I spoke to six classes of 8th graders a few weeks ago and NONE of them followed author blogs or writer’s online either. Most of them did like Facebook though, and I wonder if they’ll end up connecting that way? Maybe this will change, but I think for now we might be better off connecting with teachers and librarians who can then share with their students.


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