Every now and then when I’m going across the Internet, I stumble upon interesting sites that help to provide some type of inspiration that I previously wouldn’t have received. If you keep your eyes and ears open wide enough and are open to new information, you’ll be surprised by what you see.
This week I ended up using BuzzSumo.
I found this site due to running into a bit of writer’s block when it came to determining my topic for this blog post. 117 posts in and sometimes you have weeks where your well of literary ideas is a bit dry. So I decided to give it a try. It’s essentially a search engine that can provide a deep dive on your searched items and find a range of posts across the web with high volume of web traffic, social media sharing, and a host of other things. I’ve only used it a few times but the kicker of it seems to be in locating articles related to your keywords that have either been the most shared, trending now, and a whole host of other metrics.
Deciding to take it for a whirl, I typed in the word ‘novel’ and what came up first?
A very interesting article on how the novel Outsiders was AND still is the best-selling young adult novel of all. Even time fifty years later. Something I had absolutely no idea about!
For those not in the know, the Outsiders was a book about a couple of rival youth gangs and the perspectives between them. That’s about the extent of my memory of the book. I remember reading it in middle school but the story not really sticking with me. It wasn’t very memorable but I remember it being a part of the curriculum to study (along with things like To Kill A Mockingbird, Hamlet, Up From Slavery, and a host of other stories up through high school).
The author, S.E. Hinton, was fifteen when she first began writing the book (which is impressive enough for a guy like me still trying to do the same as he approaches thirty). It was published by the time she was eighteen and changed the landscape for a genre that a lot of people I know now make fun of for propagating one note storylines about illogical love plots with no basis (Twilight is an easy target). But other more current series such as Harry Potter, Artemis Fowl, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, and even The Hunger Games have gone into different and more exciting directions to keep a larger base of readers engaged.
On a whim, I was pulled completely into a direction that I didn’t expect and now have some type of experience to discuss on this lovely Tuesday afternoon; and while I’m still not inclined to go back and read The Outsiders, it does make me consider the fickle nature of people and their need to censor anything they delve ‘extreme’ for a certain part of the population. Especially younger adults.
Rebellion stands at the precipice of youth culture; and it’s when it’s stifled, that some of the most impressive things are born.
Until next time.