Me: I’m sitting here today with Isabella “Bella” Swan, star of the Stephanie Moyer’s Twilight series, wife of the vampire millions of teenage girls the world over dream of when they sleep at night, a woman many young girls aspire to be like. My mission – to find out just what makes this sudden celebrity so desirable to not just Edward, but to the reading world at large. So Bella, tell us about yourself.
B: Well, I’m just your average girl. I’m of average height and weight, and I have brown hair in what I guess is an average style and colour. I like to read, and I have to admit, I am a little clumsy. *giggles*
Me: That description can describe almost any girl. I want to know about the real you, the you that had almost every guy in Forks dropping at your feet, the you that attracted the attention of the sparkly vampire himself, Edward Cullen.
B: There’s not that much more about me. I’m just your average girl, you know. I have no idea why the guys were all so into me, and quite frankly it made me a little uncomfortable. I don’t like being the centre of attention. I’m just me, this average girl who would do anything for the man she loves. Surely there are hundreds of girls just like me.
Me: But surely there’s more to you. You really mean to tell us that despite being average, in both personality and looks, you got the attention of every guy around.
B: *shrugs* I guess that’s just how it happened. Maybe they saw something in me that I don’t see. I don’t know. Maybe they saw my inner romantic. I do believe in love, and the power it has over a man and woman. I would do anything to protect those I love.
Me: Even sacrificing yourself, not just once, but many times?
B: If my sacrifice means those I love survive then it’s not really much of a sacrifice.
Me: That all seems a bit martyr-ish. So let’s get this straight. You’re just an average clumsy, romantic girl, who has martyr characteristics. And this is what got you Edward?
B: *laughs* Well that and the fact he couldn’t read my mind. I guess it fascinated him.
Me: Have you ever heard of a Mary Sue Bella?
B: A Mary what? I don’t think there was any girl called Mary Sue in school. I don’t recall meeting her.
Me: A Mary sue is generally an idealised version of the author of a book. She is normally an average girl, with a cute little flaw like clumsiness who despite being completely average gets the attention of every male in the story she is in, has everybody want to be her friend, and even has some kind of power.
B: *look of confusion* I don’t know how that applies. It’s not like I’m a fictional character. And not everyone wants to be my friend.
Me: Indeed. Well moving on, tell us about your decision to become a vampire.
B: Well it wasn’t really much of a decision. Edward is a vampire and I wanted to spend forever with him.
Me: Forever is a long time. How long did you know Edward before making this decision?
B: It wasn’t really that long at all. Sometimes you just know, you know?’
Me: But what about Jacob? It seemed at some point that you weren’t sure whether the wolf or the vampire had your heart. You were very indecisive at some point. Did this affect your decision at all?
B: Well I admit, I loved Jacob. And I suppose if Edward had never come back I’d be happy with Jacob. But Edward, Edward is my soul mate, my other half. Without him the colours fade out of the world, and things just don’t feel right. I don’t know what I’d do without him.
Me: Become a shell of a girl, moping around in a depressed state and causing everyone to worry about you?
B: What? Well I guess I did get a bit down when he left me that time. But wouldn’t anybody when the love of their life abandons him. I needed him, I was nothing without him.
Me: So your saying that without a man your life was worthless, more or less? That you, the average girl, needed a man to live life and to be valued? That without a man in your life you were nothing?
B: *confused* I’m not quite sure what you want me to say.
Me: Well, we’ll ignore the anti-feminist messages in your story for now then and go back to your decision to become a vampire. So run me through how you made the decision.
B: Well I had this dream, and it seemed like I was introducing Edward to my grandmother. But then I realised that it was me with him, that I was like, really old. And despite Edward saying he would always love me, I didn’t want to grow old while he’d stay young forever.
Me: So it was a vanity thing?
B: No! Not at all. It was wanting to stay with him forever, both young.
Me: And to get this forever you were willing to become a blood thirsty monster, an out of control being who might possibly kill countless humans before she mastered the thirst, giving up every human you hold dear to you for a man. That seems like a terrible cost.
B: Yes but what cost isn’t worth paying, for love? Edward was my life, he was my family now.
Me: And you were willing to give up the rest of your life for that? Those who had raised you, those who had loved you?
B: Wouldn’t you do the same? How could I live without him? All I gave up was nothing compared to a life without him. And sure, there was a chance I’d become a monster. But that didn’t happen, and even if it had I’m sure Edward would have helped me, and made sure I didn’t kill any humans.
Me: Did you know that another trait of Mary Sues is that they master new skills and abilities quickly, in much the manner you inexplicably mastered the thirst?
B: *confused once more* I don’t know what you’re trying to imply by constantly bringing up this Mary Sue person, or what they have to do with me.
Me: Of course not. So we’ll move on to my last questions. What would you say to young girls, looking for love? Young women who have not yet found their Edward
B: I want to tell them that love is out there, and that while they may not have found him yet their Edward is waiting so don’t give up hope and don’t settle for anything less. If a completely average girl like me can find my true love then yours is surely out there, and you should do anything you can to be with him.
Me: Including abandoning your family and friends for the sake of a love that might not last?
B: Love is forever, and if the girls know their love is true then no sacrifice is worth the cost. Nothing compares to love, love is worth every risk, and every sacrifice. Just look at me, and how I worked out.
Me: But what if you’re the exception and not the rule?
B: I know that in the case of love there is no exception. You’re just a cynic. These girls will know, like I did, when their love is forever, and if they have to give up everything for that love then surely it is worth the cost. And that is my final word on the subject.
Me: Well there we have it, an average girl who feels love justifies every sacrifice and who isn’t anything without a man. As my final word I’d like to ask young girls who wish to be like Bella to think about their actions before they burn any bridges in their search for love. Sure, you might find true love, but in our world with our sky rocketing divorce rate, love isn’t forever and it will be your family and friends who pick you up if you fall. So don’t follow Bella’s example, giving up everything that you were for a man. Find a man who is willing to allow you to be yourself, and who won’t require you to sacrifice the love of the people who have been with you through every part of your life before this man arrived.