Star Wars, The Hunger Games, and the Storytelling Power of Thematic Resonance

Good stories always have great characters. The great stories always have something more. What sets them apart are themes that resonate deeply with the reader, viewer, or audience. Great stories don’t just entertain – they make us think, challenge our assumptions or beliefs, or inspire us to do great things ourselves.

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Journey of a Strong Female Heroine: Katniss Everdeen

What sets The Hunger Games apart from the rest of the field, though, is its lead character, Katniss Everdeen, and the skill with which Collins executes a novel trilogy centered around a young female lead. Where so many others have failed, or not even bothered to try, Collins not only creates a Strong Female Heroine, but also makes the story her Heroine’s Journey from impoverished nobody to national symbol. There are far too few stories of this kind in the genre – or anywhere else for that matter – even amid the prolific storytelling boom of recent years. For authors, screenwriters, and others struggling to figure out how to write better female characters and better female-centered stories, The Hunger Games has to be at the very top of the list to read, analyze, and learn from.

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Team Katniss: Collaborative Success in The Hunger Games

In The Hunger Games novel trilogy, Suzanne Collins created another fantastic example of an heroic story centered around one principal character, without losing touch with the role that teamwork and collaborative success play in human nature. In a very real sense, the trilogy is not the story of the rise and triumph of Katniss Everdeen, but rather the success of Team Katniss.

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Looking Forward to the New Year – 2012 Preview Fangirl-style

Last week I looked back at the top ten moments of 2011 for the blog and for me as a fan. This week, I thought I’d kick off the year with a list of the top ten events I’m most anticipating for 2012. If 2011 is any indication, though, I think it’s a safe bet that my year-end list twelve months from now won’t just be a repeat of this one.

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Top Ten Moments of 2011

Reflecting on a top ten moments for 2011 in a blog post is really something I’m doing for me, because I like to see where I thought I’d go and where I actually ended up. It helps in future goal-setting and gives me a bright spot to return to when I need a pick-me-up. But if you want to catch up on what’s been happening at FANgirl Blog, I’ve got a lot of the year captured in today’s post. In reverse order, my top ten of 2011…

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