Monday, July 11, 2011

The Effects of a Good Blonde Joke

Before I trudge on with ultimate blondness I want to thank the bloggers who came looking for me while I've been away. Mostly summer caught up with me and spending time with my mom while she's been sick. But now I'm back! (and hopefully better than ever, hahaha!)

I'm a blonde, yep, with an 'e'. You see blonde/blond is a French word where the ending letter determines the sex of the person you're describing. So, I'm a blonde with an 'e'. I'm always surprised at how many books use 'blond' to describe girls. I guess the rule doesn't matter in America and I don't have much of an opinion on that.

So, being a blonde, I hate writing MC's as blondes.


Because blondes are either stupid, slutty, cheerleaders, prissy, the popular ones, or the evil ones. You might be thinking I'm reaching now. There are plenty of good books where the MC is blonde and she isn't any of those things and none of her friends think that. Such as the Evermore Immortals series by Alyson Noel (love those books).

But seriously, I rarely see book covers with blondes who aren't any of the things I've described. When a blonde is featured on a YA cover the title usually includes Pretty or Queen.

I'm thinking this has to do with the effects of a good blonde joke. I've been around for awhile and have heard some really good blonde jokes. My favorite being:

Q. What do you call a dead blonde in a closet?

A. Last year's hide-and-go-seek winner.

See, what I mean? That's a pretty good one. With jokes like that, how can I possibly make my MC a pretty blonde who happens to be smart and witty with a good sense of humor and an uncanny knack to blow off the stupid boys effectively? I could. But would you trust that she would be this way if you saw her pretty little face on the cover of the book?

Let's face it. Marketing a blonde MC that doesn't fit into her cliche would be more difficult than a brunette.

What percentage of YA girl MC's do you think are brunette? And blonde?

Do you jump at buying up books where a blonde-haired girl is pasted on the cover?

I tried to jump out of my blonde cliche by getting tattoos and body piercings when I was young. And even still, I added two more tattoos in my thirties. I wanted people to take me more seriously and not as a dim-witted, bubbly, cheerleader-esque, goody-goody. For the most part it worked; people realize I have more depth than my appearance might otherwise suggest.

The only bummer about that is. . .I never get to hear the good blonde jokes anymore.


  1. I don't read young adult, but the woman's hair color doesn't affect what I buy otherwise.

  2. Nice to see you back. Still lots of summer left.

  3. I see what you're saying about blonde stereotyping. I'm not even blonde but I'm tired of the pretty"IT" girl always being blonde and the girl with dishwater, dull hair is usually brunette. That being said, I think non-stereotypical blonde roles are exactly what we need in books.

  4. Bahahaha! I'm with you there. (tattoos and piercings really do help people take you more seriously...weird...and I do miss good blonde jokes too) There are some great blonde characters but...not many. Actually...I haven't written a good blonde one. Stupid stereotypes made me stereotype my own characters! Drats! (glad you're back!)

  5. Welcome back. :) That has to be the funniest blonde joke I have ever heard! I agree with you, I haven't seen many blondes on covers. A lot of YA is dark, and I don't think blonde really gives that effect.

  6. Hmm, I'm not sure about blondes - my sister's a redhead and that has its own set of cliches, but she doesn't define any of them, so whatever! I live in a very conservative community, so trust me, I'd be taken more seriously as a blonde than I am as a person with tattoos!

  7. I haven't really thought about if the color of the hair affects my book purchases. HMMM... I did realize this week that when I'm choosing a new haircut I have to choose one that is on a blonde model. I'm always worried if I pick one with darker hair it might not look right in a different color. But maybe that's me just being blonde???

  8. I've never really thought about it and don't chose books on hair color.