Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Behind the Scenes: Forbidden Without Knowing Why

Welcome to Behind the Scenes, a place where I delve into the wheres, whys, hows, and other sundry research regarding my novel, Trefury. Come explore this month's topic with me.

Have you ever been forbidden to do something without knowing the reason why? It doesn't have to be something deep, dark, dangerous, or controversial. Think especially about your childhood or teen years. Did a parent, guardian, teacher, or other supervising adult have a rule that didn't make sense to you? Did you try to get around it? Did you obey it unquestioningly? Did you ever find out the reason for the rule?

One of my main characters, Cortnee, butts heads with her mother over the issue of taking dancing lessons. Her mother grudgingly allowed it for a few years on the stipulation that Cortnee can't exhibit her skills. This actually applies to all of the other extra-curricular classes Cortnee takes (and there are several!) But as soon as they need to move, her mother seizes this opportunity as an excuse to drop the dance classes. The problem is Cortnee is a natural born dancer and wants to grow up to dance professionally. This whole situation is actually backstory for the novel but the consequences of their subsequent struggle over the issue is a driving factor in present-novel-Cortnee's decisions.

Cortnee bows to her mother's wishes because of what ensues from this disagreement. However, she does find ways to circumvent her mother's anti-dance sentiments. She pursues a secondary dream of becoming a recording engineer.

What's a recording engineer? (More on that research coming up soon.)

This secondary pursuit, along with her original dreams of becoming a dancer, play an integral part in not only who she is and what she wants, but create some unexpected reactions from my other main character (more on him to come.) It's not until towards the end of the story that Cortnee learns why her mother was so against dancing, and the explanation knocks the figurative rug out from under her feet.

Share your story of being forbidden to do something in the comments. How did it affect you? For those of you who are parents, have you been placed in a position where you had to forbid your children to do something? Was it hard? Did you let them know the reason why? Please keep these experiences PG or lower. No political or theological rants, please. These will be deleted.


  1. Ok there we go. I tried twice to leave a comment on your blog via my wordpress, but it didn't go through.

    I couldn't wear anything but shoes inside at my grandparent's house after they fixed up the place. Socks were no good--they would get holes in them! Bare feet were no good--you'd catch a cold! And both of them allowed your deadly foot oils to leak into the carpet!

    I openly defied this rule with all its corollaries until I was "reminded" of what I was supposed to do. I thought the rule silly, especially since it was my Mom's rule--only sometimes enforced by my grandma and all but ignored by my grandpa. After about one year's time, the rule faded into a memory...and was never heard from again.

    Until now...

    1. Had to wear shoes! Wow. Most places I know, people discourage footwear inside the house. Love the part about deadly foot oils. =)

      Thanks for sharing!