From the inbox:
Hello, I’m doing a book report on your book. Can you tell me the theme of The Demon King? Also if you could give me a list of your major and minor characters, the major conflict and its resolution, it would help me out a lot. –Signed, Desperate in Des Moines
Ah, theme. Why not go straight to the author when you’re on deadline? Didn’t you ever want to raise your hand in English class during the discussion of The Lord of the Flies, and say, “Well, actually, I emailed William Golding last night, and Golding said he didn’t make Jack red-headed as a symbol of anarchy. Jack was modeled after this obnoxious red-headed kid he knew growing up.”
My usual answer to theme questions is that readers and writers are partners in story, and that every reader has a different take-away based on his personal history and beliefs. So, I say, decide for yourself what the theme is, but be ready to defend it.
Kids hate this.
(see the rest here. )