Hellooo, it's dark in here, will somebody
please turn on a light?
That's what I feel like shouting when I see rows of young adult novels in my favorite bookstore. Through squinting eyes, I see black and bloody covers, vampires and wolves leering back at me.
These days, they seem to be the rage in books, television, movies and the Internet. The only rage I see is what they produce in me.
Harry Potter brought the world of wizards to the middle grade readers in 600 or more pages. That's right scare them to sleep, I'm sure there's a package of GoodNites handy.
On the flip side, it sparked children into reading, especially boys. Who am I kidding, it sparked some adults to read. But this fact alone doesn't soothe my discomfort, not even close.
Yes, I'm going to say it. I yearn for the television of yesterday. Let's not get crazy ... I crave for yesterday's television entertainment with New Millennium conveniences.
You know we can't live without our tech toys and Lattes. But it would be nice not to watch television between my fingers for a change and not dash to the fridge for a ginger ale during a CSI episode.
However, nobody made me key in that channel on the remote on Wednesday at 10 p.m. Curiosity sometimes takes us Average Jones where we shouldn't go. But that's another post.
What happened to Touched by an Angel, 7th Heaven and the angel books that are now hard press to find? If there was ever a time this world needed angels, it would be now.
Sure, I didn't grow up in an antiseptic bubble. I watched Hitchcock reruns and saw a few Jason movies and some of Stephen King's craziness, but they were tucked away in their genre closet. I opened the door only at select times. They didn't bombard my daily life like a bad hair cut.
Can't say that anymore. At the supermarket, I see that Twilight couple when I'm looking for my Lays potato chips and Snapple. Harry Potter stares at me when I'm searching for a Three Musketeers bar in the candy aisle.
It's no different shopping for kids' clothes and accessories. There they are again, like somebody called them. I don't want dark thoughts, so I'm not calling them.
Child with balloon
But I'm an adult, I can handle it. I no longer wet my bed. Well, not yet. But can our kids, tweens and teens handle the darkness? They're bombarded with challenges we never had to deal with.
Today, they have high blood pressure, sleeping and eating disorders. They're making baby and suicide pacts, having internet sex and the frightening list continues.
Domestic violence in teen relationships not only slithered into the halls of high schools, but sneaked into middle schools too. Yes, we prefer to put our fingers in our ears and sing La-La-La when a news report give us proof that elementary school children are experimenting with sex.
Now you understand why I want the light turned on in the literary and broadcast worlds. Doctors take a pledge that says, "... Do no harm." Maybe writers, producers and book publishers should take a similar pledge, "...For their writing to do no harm."
Then, there are those who have shone the light on their creations and let characters boost their readers' self-esteem.
We can't go back to the Brady Bunch, Dennis the Menace and The Waltons' days. But we can take back entertainment and break new innovative ground.
The Brady Bunch, Dennis the Menace and The Waltons broke new ground for their season. It's time for more groundbreaking work that will lift our spirits in this season.
(Girl in pink)
"Teach a child to choose the right path and when he is older, he will remain upon it." Proverbs 21:6
Here's a thought, maybe if we let the light into our writing, there would be more light entering our children's lives. Children and teens have a lot more challenges than we ever had, which is evident in the Oscar nominated movie, Precious.
When the mother described to the social worker how the father abused Precious as an infant with her present, I left the room. It ended for me there.
(Jumping on trampoline)
I approach my writing as an escape for readers. I want to entertain, inspire, provoke laughter, smiles and encourage imagination. We can't act like the ills of the world don't exist. But we can tackle them through volunteering and mentoring for starters.
Writing is where I let the light shine, so the young and young-at- heart can soar through unlimited possibilities. Where they can dare to dream and see that dream into reality.
That's a little hard to do when you're stumbling around in the dark getting bumped and bruised. At least flick on the switch, so you can see what's coming at you.
Stop by iCafe Woman Moderne with your favorite beverage.
We'll leave the light on for you.