My story is called Cherry Bomb and I will admit, it draws on the whole bad-boy/good-girl cliché.
But I don’t want story to be one-dimensional. I don’t want the characters to have little development and then just miraculously end up together–I want the characters to love and hurt and learn.
That being said, they make a lot of bad decisions. This is where my dilemma comes in.
I want the two protagonists, Brett and Lacey, to make mistakes that are big enough that the characters will be impacted by them. Mistakes that they can learn from and readers can relate to. At the same time, I don’t want the mistakes to be so ridiculous that it will make the characters deplorable and deter people from reading to the most important part–the part where they learn from their mistakes.
One of the issues that comes into the story, for example, is that Lacey keeps trying to lose her virginity to prove her ex-boyfriend that he was wrong about her being “boring.” In one scene, she is almost sexually assaulted by her ex-boyfriend. Still, she continues to worry about fitting his standards and proving herself to him.
I am afraid that readers will stop right there when Lacey continues to care about someone so awful. I don’t want readers to think that I am trying to promote such a relationship or worse, think that sexual assault is not a big deal or is acceptable.
At the same time, I want to be realistic. Lacey, like many other teenage girls, has a low self-esteem and is endlessly concerned with fitting in–eventually, she will realize the flaw in her thinking and realize she’s worth so much more than what others say she is and is deserving of much better treatment.
END OF SPOILER
I would appreciate if anyone would read the published chapters and let me know if the characters’ actions make them unappealing or if the story starts seeming like I’m promoting toxic relationships. Also, advice on how to change this is welcome.
Thank you so much,