Suzanne Collins

“One of the reasons it's important for me to write about war is I really think that the concept of war, the specifics of war, the nature of war, the ethical ambiguities of war, are introduced too late to children. I think they can hear them, understand them, know about them, at a much younger age without being scared to death by the stories” (“Suzanne Collins Quotes”). Suzanne Collins Has been one of the most influential authors of the Twenty-first century. Collins has written many books, but one of her most successful and influential books was The Hunger Games. While writing this book, Collins was influenced by her father’s career and also by Greek mythology, both of these sources had a theme, one of war and the other of using deaths as an entertainment. Both of these themes greatly influenced the writing of The Hunger Games.

Suzanne Collins was born on August 10, 1962, in Hartford, Connecticut (“Suzanne Collins”). Collins was the daughter of an Air forces officer, and is the youngest of four children, being the daughter of an Air Force officer, she moved quite an amount during her childhood, living in places like New York and Brussels (“Suzanne Collins”). In Collins family, history was a very important topic. Much of that part of the family was driven by Collin’s father, who taught history at the college level and was open with his kids about his military experience, including his deployment to Vietnam (“Suzanne Collins”). Collin’s family later ended up in the south, where Collins graduated from high school from the Alabama School of Fine Arts in 1980, then after high school, she enrolled at Indiana University, where she graduated in 1985 as a double major in theater and telecommunication (“Suzanne Collins”). After graduating from graduate school, Collins moved into television, writing for several children’s television programs, including Clarissa Explains It All and Little Bear (“Suzanne Collins”). Her work for those TV programs caught the attention of James Proimos, creator, creator of the WB children’s program Generation O!, who hired Collins as his head writer, and James was just a big fan of Collins’s writing that he encourages her to start writing her own books (“Suzanne Collins”). Suzanne Collins was always moving from place to place due to her father’s job, but because of that, she was able to experience different environments and new cultures. Collins was a very educated child due to her father always teaching his children what he knows about the world around them. According to an interview between James Blasingame and Suzanne Collins, Collins mentions that her father was a very intelligent man and was always aware and knowledgeable of what was happening around him, and he always did his best to pass his knowledge of history, politics, and world events on to his own children, and that greatly influenced Collins’s life forever.

All of these great experiences and teachings that were available to Collins, played a big role when it came it came to for her to write her own books. Collins has written many books that have been very successful and amazing works of her, but one of her most well known and most successful was The Hunger Games. Suzanne Collins’ not only wrote books that were influenced by her life experiences and travels but also from other areas, like for example, Greek mythology.

When writing The Hunger Games, Collins was inspired by the story of Theseus, the mythical king of Athens, who slew the Minotaur, the horrible monster imprisoned in the Labyrinth, the gigantic maze designed by Daedalus (Blasingame and Collins 726). In the story, King Minos of Crete accepted a peaceful settlement which included a regular tribute by which the Athenians would be reminded of their subjugation to Crete (Blasingame and Collins 727). Every nine years seven Athenian boys and seven Athenian girls would be sent to Crete to be devoured by the Minotaur (Blasingame and Collins 727). This part of the myth is where Collins got her idea of creating 12 districts in The Hunger Games, and that every year two young tributes, a boy, and a girl, are sent away to fight till death. A young girl from District 12 volunteers as a tribute and takes her sisters place and at the end of The Hunger Games, she is the one out the two of the last ones left. Collins was also influenced by the same myth to write this in the book, which is when the Athenian hero Theseus took the place of one of the young tributes, killed the Minotaur, and solved the puzzle of the maze (Blasingame and Collins 727). It can be seen clearly that most of the book was mostly influenced by a Greek mythology. Collins followed some of same concepts and theme of the myth, and converted it into something more modern, with love and death. But the Greek myth was not the only thing that influenced Collins to write The Hunger Games, Collins was also influenced by one of her favorite movies Spartacus. Collins researched the historical Spartacus and the popular media about the Spartacus and she found three things that are always present in the gladiator paradigm: first, there is always a ruthless government, second, the government forces people to fight to the death and third, the government uses these fights to the death as a form of popular entertainment (Blasingame and Collins 727). These three main points are all present in Collin’s book The Hunger Games. Collins used these three points to create the overall theme of the book and the purpose of the book she was going to write. This comes to show that many times authors sometimes don’t always get their inspirations and ideas from their own experiences or things they have seen, but are also inspired by other subjects and teachings that are out there, and many times authors use those other sources to create books and novels that influenced other people to write their own book and to be inspired.

Suzanne Collins has greatly influenced the generation of this century, and not only was her book The Hunger Games very influential, but the conversion from a book to a film was an even better achievement. Collin’s books changed the way looked at books, and made it to something that everyone wanted to read and have in their possession, because it was such a book that was emotional to other and made many people changed their perspective of how they look at the society and how the government runs society, and made many have seconds thoughts on wether our government will become something similar to Collins’s book. But it’s amazing how the whole theme of The Hunger Games is not something new, but has been around for quite a while and has already been done by governments in the past, and it creates a thought of how our world will become in the near future.