Guest Post: Maggie Thrash, Author of Honor Girl

I am so pleased to be part of Maggie Thrash’s blog tour. Here is Maggie!

I would never want to be a “comedian” or a “comic” because they can probably never relax at parties. They’re always on call to chime in with some witty barb or a monologue about how crazy it was to make a withdrawal at the ATM today, or what’s the deal with people who drink coconut water. But I do think that a sense of humor is pretty essential when you’re treating your reader to the story of how love slowly and tortuously crushed your spirit.

My graphic memoir HONOR GIRL is about the summer I got totally slammed with love for an older girl, and how that love played out in the confines of a southern Christian camp in the year 2000. It was a very serious summer for me. Every day felt like I was probably going to die. Which isn’t to say that I would go back in time and tell myself to lighten up. No fifteen-year-old girl needs yet another voice telling her that her feelings are melodramatic, that she should just smile and be delightful for the pleasure of everyone around her. But when I decided to write this, it was with the understanding that the reader would need—and deserved—a regularly scheduled break from the relentless angst I was serving up. The Royal Tenenbaums is a movie that does this really well. The characters are all super angsty and hardly anyone smiles for the duration of the film, but it’s not dragging you down. There’s something very buoyant about their despair.

I also remember being fifteen and how the slightest thing could set you off laughing uncontrollably. I think as you get older, you start to lose the expectation that at any second, something completely hilarious could happen. With HONOR GIRL I wanted to capture that particular depression where you spend most of the day lying face-down on your bed, but you still have the energy to explode laughing when some ridiculous person has a wedgie or something!

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HONOR GIRL. Copyright © 2015 by Maggie Thrash. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA.