This was a hard one for me. Bromance for my other blog came easily but I had to really think to get a topic for today but I think this one will work really well. A sense of belonging is something that many people can relate with and something that a number of my characters face.
The Desire to Belong
While there is definitely a lot to be said about being an individual, there is still always that desire to belong somewhere. Whether it's to belong to a certain group, to belong to that place we might be able to call home, or even to belong to what we view we should be like, that need exists for many. Which is what makes it a potential want for a character as well.
In many of my novels, there are main characters who have this desire and it affects their story. This is common in young adult in particular but I also have a few adult characters that I can name. Here are some as examples.
epic fantasy - One of the elf characters in particular struggles with this desire to belong. Growing up, he was raised by a healer after his mother left him near her home in a different city, and he didn't look like any of the other elves in the area. He stood out and that made others avoid him. Out in the world, traveling, isn't much better for him. Through the story he has to figure out himself and a way to be happy with the fact that he may not fit in exactly but his view of how others see him isn't exactly correct either.
mutant series - Noah is a little different in that he technically fit in with those around him growing up. He went to a school full of mutants, his family is too, and yet he doesn't like it. He doesn't want to be the way he is and instead dreams of being what he calls "normal."
Young Adult Novels:
lighting the wall - Both characters struggle with this. Sage is a stranger to the village and thus at once doesn't feel like he belongs and because of having to move around so much, has never really had a home. He has come to expect that he will have to leave at any given time. Wyck grew up in the village but after his mom's death, he has a sense that he can't quite understand. He struggles with figuring out how to overcome his issues with his father and with the village.
ottohahn in e minor - This is a character who is skilled with music and art but living in a science focused society. He is intelligent but doesn't feel he is smart enough. He has a difficult time trying to live up to his father and the society's expectations.
What about you?
Any of your characters struggle with belonging?