Friday, September 9, 2011
What's In A Smell?
Smell. Particularly guys that smell. *eye roll* With the way I'm talking you'd think I was talking about a bad smell but I'm not. I'm talking about how every single author, (mainly YA authors) at some point, mentions the smell of the potential love interest for our female MC. I defy you to find a YA book where it doesn't mention some guy's scent.
It's usually described as some manly pine, musky, scent. OK, the truth is I'm so sick of it I skim these parts with a exaggerated sigh and an accompanying eye roll. What is the freaking big deal about this apparently hugely important detail?! Personally, I kinda think guys stink and unless they're wearing my favorite cologne you aren't going to catch me swooning.
I'm thinking it has something to do with the advice you'll find in any how-to-write book these days. There's always a chapter on engaging all the senses: sight, touch, sound, taste, and the ever annoying smell. This is very good advice. It takes us as the reader further into the story and helps us imagine things even better than we might have, but does all that smelly detail have to be talking about a guy? All the time?!
I have two theories. Theory number one: Most woman are more particular about smell than I am and actually notice it. So when a mans smell is written about in a book they can relate and appreciate it. This saddens me for two reason. One, I'm starting to worry I'm not womanly enough and, two, why in the blazes are women walking around smelling guys and actually vocalizing it in their minds?! My sister informs me that she was very aware of her husband's "smell" before they got married and she loved it so I'm starting to think that, in fact, I'm just not womanly enough. Sigh! Oh well, you woman can obsess about a guys smell I'll stick to admiring their calves.
Theory number two: I once read somewhere...actually I'm sure I read it more than once...that guys think other guys are stinky, but they think woman smell so good, almost flowery. So did some woman author out there decide one day that, that just wasn't fair? She probably enjoyed the manly scent of men and decided she would let the world know. Now there's some secret, underground group of woman authors who have made a blood pact that all their books must have a reference to a mans scent and that it must be a good scent, dang it! The female MC must swoon when she smells said scent. And if any author goes against the pact...oh, you don't want to know what will happen. ;)
Anywho, those are my theories. There must be some reason it's in EVERY YA book. So, am I all alone in even noticing this in books? Cause if I am you can just smile nervously and click frantically away from my blog if you want.