Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Objects That Make Us People

After considering my chair (yep, still on the subject), I’ve decided that it IS normal, and not only that, having objects that are important to us is human nature. These are the human things that make our lives richer, make us real-live people.

Off the top of my head, I can think of two different semi-popular songs about chairs. CHAIRS! And stories, lots, and lots of stories, in which setting or certain objects are such an important element that they’re almost characters, too.

Consider the following songs:

Kenny Chesney's “Old Blue Chair” (How fitting is that?)
Rachel Proctor's “If That Chair Could Talk”

Martina McBride's “House of a Thousand Dreams” which isn’t about a chair, but a house that almost lives and breathes.
Sara Evans's “Rocking Horse” and “On the Backseat of a Greyhound Bus”

All these songs are about objects, vehicles, or homes that play an important part in the story of someone's life.

Okay, what about books? How about:

The town of Forks in Stephenie Meyer's Twilight
Macon Raven's house in Beautiful Creatures
The mortuary in Dan Wells's I Am Not a Serial Killer
The door in Lisa Mangum's The Hourglass Door
Katniss Everdeen's bow and arrows in The Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins)
Hurricane Isadore, and any body of water in Angela Morrison's Taken by Storm 
The forest in Carrie Ryan's The Forest of Hands and Teeth

Each of these stories contains one place or thing that gives readers a solid sense of solidarity. Place, time, and character.

What unnatural object makes your story (or life)richer?


Jeff King said...

My characters often find attachment in weapons, or gadgets.

CL Beck, author said...

Hmmm, my main character doesn't have one, but maybe she should. Thanks for the suggestion. :)

Angie said...

I have a character with a strong attachment to a locket in my book. And it's hugely important to the story. I'm trying to think of the important ones in my life. My guitar. The porch swing.