I was on FB the other morning (shocking, I know), when I stumbled across a status update from another writerly friend commenting about the beauty of Ray Bradbury's writings. She stated that she loved his stories because they were always about more than the plot and characters. His stories tapped into deeper, universal themes, something not always present in YA literature.
I stewed on this for a while. I am a huge Ray Bradbury fan and I love the way he uses fantastical stories to comment on life issues. Like All Summer in a Day and bullying as just one example. I think my friend was right about YA too. We don't always explore deeper themes. Or, when we do, we sometimes approach it head one, making that topic the plot of the story. We don't always use our stories to comment on life and the deep stuff as Ray Bradbury always does.
Anyway, all of this got me to thinking - what do you as readers and writers do? Are you conscious of themes and tackling deep issues? Is it something you work at? Another writer once said in a conference that we really only write about one or two themes in our books - that no matter how different the book, there really are only a few universal themes each writer explores. Hers related to parent-child relationships. Mine are about finding your "voice", your authentic self.
What are yours?