It turns out that there are many things that I thought were so universal and obvious that they didn’t need to be discussed, but in this particular instance, and many others, I am wrong. Given the general trend among people to be willfully illiterate I suppose it is not surprising that Literary Crushes are not as common a phenomenon as I thought. As the name suggests, a Literary Crush is a romantic infatuation with a fictional character. This is not to be confused with the insanity associated with Twilight characters which I can only term as emotional cultdom. I am talking about a normal, healthy, I-really-wish-this-was-a-real-person-so-we-could-meet-and-fall-in-love-and-be-happy-forever crush. What may not be quite so healthy is that I have considerably more literary crushes than real person crushes, but I’m going to attribute that to spending more time with books than people.
It was also recently brought to my attention that there are far more crush options available to women than men- varying of course depending on the kind of person you are into. Assuming you are into dynamic character-people you really can’t get invested in traditional romance novel characters and for some reason the women in fiction tend to be accessories to the story, and not nearly so confident, strong and sexy as their fictional male counterparts. Of course there are exceptions, otherwise guys would have no idea what I’m talking about (I hear Daisy Buchanan is popular) but I get their point overall.
Ladies on the other hand, we get to take our pick from the likes of Mr. Darcy, Rhett Butler, Matthew Clairmont et cie(which is only the tip of a very large iceberg). And while there will always be criticism of taking fiction too seriously, I highly value and encourage a nice literary crush. It can help you figure out what you like and don’t like without the messy fallout of actually experiencing it and hurting some very non-fictional feelings. It can help you assemble a blueprint, as it were, to match real people up against when looking for specific traits you know you adore (though this can definitely be taken too far). Best of all, your literary crush is always there in your head when you want to spend time with them- which is also the worst of all, since they can’t actually exist outside of your head.
There are some very clear pros and cons to any crush, but I can’t recommend a good Lit Crush enough. The nature of that crush is entirely up to you, and you don’t have to tell anyone how serious you are about them… until the wedding and/or hysterical pregnancy.