10 years ago, a little novel called Twilight swept the world off of its feet. There were three books and a movie out by the time it caught my attention because you know I’m always late to every bandwagon. I remember how every single person was reading it or had read it and I was the odd one out because I refused to succumb to the peer pressure. At that time, I thought I was being cool by not following trends. Also, growing up, my mum was quite strict with what I read. Anything that even looked like a love story was not allowed even when I was of the age to start reading middle grade romances. So I was afraid that my mum might see the book in my bag or while I was reading and would get angry. All these factors basically made Twilight something that I wrote off as inaccessible.
I was 13 when my cousin finally managed to shove the book into my hands. She told me to read the first few chapters and then decide if I really didn’t want to continue. So I read. And read and read and read. I was hooked.
You know how every book has a set body? Beginning, climax and conclusion? Well this was the only book till today where I forgot that there was supposed to be a climax. In fact if Laurent, Victoria and James hadn’t even been in the book, I wouldn’t have cared. I could have read about Edward and Bella’s love story for the rest of my life it seemed like. I was completely in love with them. Of course I soon got the courage to ask my parents for the full set of books and I devoured them. I read The Short Second Life Of Bree Tanner and I got the graphic novels and movie companions. I was obsessed.
For years after I read the saga, the simple mention of Twilight could make my heart squeeze. In fact, I was 16 when the final movie came out and I still remember sitting there watching the trailer and being unable to breathe. I was completely and utterly in love with Twilight.
Twilight was not the series that started me on my reading path. I have been reading my whole life. But Twilight was the book that changed a lot in my life. It made me grow up in my reading choices. After Twilight, I started reading more and more books that were suitable for my age. I stopped the Babysitters Club and Meg Cabot and started reading books that every other girl my age was reading. Twilight also helped me find common ground with people. I was able to talk to people about it and get all excited about it with them. But mostly, Twilight was the thing that started me on my writing path. If Twilight hadn’t introduced me to the community of people online that swooned and screamed over the same things I did, I would never have started writing fan fiction and if I never started writing fan fiction, I can assure you that this blog wouldn’t have existed today. Because fan fiction was the thing that gave me the courage to start writing for the Internet. Knowing that people loved my stories filled me with a kind of pride and confidence that I had never experienced. And because of that, Twilight will always have a special place in my heart. Because I think it had a big part to play in who I am today. (Was my fan fic plug subtle enough?)
Last night, I was scrolling through Twitter before bed and I stumbled across an article talking about the new Twilight book. I freaked out to say the least. Turns out that Stephenie Meyer wanted to go a little crazy and so she dropped a full sized novel without telling anyone. Literally there were not advanced copies, no countdowns, no hints, no nothing. One minute there was no book and the next there was. So of course I immediately grabbed my laptop, got the book and started reading it (after doing an impromptu book photoshoot at like midnight of course). I didn’t know much about it except that it was the same story. Only that every single character except Charlie and Renee had had their genders switched and of course all the names were different. At that point I was too excited to think clearly so to me I was like, “Well no one was expecting anything at all so I think we should all just be very grateful and bow down.”
I am still reading Life and Death but I’ll share my initial thoughts with you guys now. I’m honestly not impressed. Now I know Twilight like the back of my hand. So the story is very very familiar. Only thing is that I find that I keep having to remind myself that I’m not reading in Bella’s voice. I’m reading in Beau’s voice. It’s just this strange sense of being a stranger in a world that I lived in for years.
Another thing I’m annoyed about is how un-boyish Beau is. I have read hundreds of books that are written in a boy’s POV and this one is the worst one yet. I mean I expect him to resemble Mike Newton at this point. Not simply Bella with a ‘he’ at the end of every sentence. It honestly feels like Stephanie pulled up her old Twilight word document and used that handy feature that locates words and changes it to change all the ‘hers’ to ‘hims’ and all the names too.
But you know what? I can rant and rave at Life and Death but the fact of the matter is that it is still Twilight and Twilight is my baby. So much like a real baby, you might get angry at it, but you could never really hate it. I’m really so excited that Stephanie Meyer rewrote Twilight. I’m glad that she published something that she wanted instead of what everyone else wanted her to publish (*cough* Midnight Sun).
So happy anniversary to the saga that basically changed my life. I love you very much and I probably always will. Even if you decide to turn all the characters into aliens and have them reproduce like bacteria, I will still love you. Okay maybe not…if they reproduce like bacteria…I need to stop. I love you guys see you soon!