Can Twilight save America?
By Jenny Jaffe
INT. WHITE HOUSE - DAY Obama stands at the end of the hall where he delivered the speech when he killed Bin Laden. OBAMA My fellow Americans. These past few years represent a challenging time for America's economy. We have faced massive unemployment, trillions of dollars in debt, and a stock market on the brink of collapse. And yet amidst the bleakest financial landscape in recent history, there has one enduring beacon of hope. The Young Adult Novel. Although millions of Americans have lost their jobs and homes, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows still grossed over a billion dollars. The Hunger Games books have sold (X) million copies. Maudlin books about pasty teens pining after each other seem to be the only thing making money anymore. He walks over to an easel, on which is a chart of "What the Average American Made in 2011", represented as a small bar graph. OBAMA This is what the average American made in the past year. He pulls out another chart. It features the same small bar graph, this time next to a bar that smashes through the top of the chart. It reads, "What Stephanie Meyers Made on Tuesday". OBAMA And this is what Stephanie Meyers, author of the Twilight series, made yesterday on merchandise sales alone. That's more than the current GDP of Greece. If we could replicate the success of these books a few million times over, we could bring America out of the recession once and for all. Which is why after extensive discussions with my financial advisors and my teenage daughters, I am pleased to present to you the Young Adult Novel Economic Solution. The words "Young Adult Novel Economic Solution" appear onscreen as the Lower Third. OBAMA As of next week, every American between the ages of 18 and 65 are required to begin writing their very own Young Adult novel. It can be about anything you want. It could be about: As he lists off the ideas, they appear next to him on screen. OBAMA Pixies. Cheerleaders with tails. Boys with an edge who just want to be loved and who are also half elf. Or has there been a zombie love story yet? That could be cool. And I promise that the government will do its part to help you as best we can to craft a story that's simple, yet complex enough to warrant sequels. For instance, we are holding a summit in Washington next month where the top Young Adult writers in the country will be brainstorming heroic but non-threatening Greco-Roman male names, and we've set up online resources like synonymsforhazel.gov. "synonymsforhazel.gov" appears in the lower third. OBAMA In addition, we will be sending out a Young Adult Novel Starter Kit to every home in America. He pulls out a box marked "Government-Issued Young Adult Novel Starter Kit". OBAMA Inside, you will find all of the resources necessary to write your very own bestselling Young Adult Novel, like a list of acceptable ways to build sexual tension between characters who can't touch, and a wheel for choosing blandly likeable actresses to star in the film adaptation. He pulls out a tiny wheel and spins it. It lands on a space that says "That Girl From Vampire Diaries". OBAMA Then you just mail back the manuscript, and a team of former CIA turned graphic designers will design an enticing cover, like this one. He pulls out a book called "Fairy High School", which features a girl with wings and a wolf turned dramatically away from each other and the tag line "What would you do if you couldn't be with the werewolf you loved?" OBAMA As long as every American citizen does their civic duty by creating simmering but not overwhelming sexual tension between mythological creatures, there is no way this plan can fail. Plus, the opportunity for spin-offs, movie franchises, and merchandising ensures our future financial security, as well as a continuing supply of ideas for Halloween costumes. Now I'd like to leave you with a passage from my own young adult novel, President Wizard. ((clears throat)) "Oh boy," said Barry excitedly. "I always knew I was a wizard, but now you're telling me I'm a President, too?" Hoofkins nodded his giant giraffe head. "And now you must go to the President academy, where all young Wizard Presidents learn the magic of politics and friendship." He closes the book. OBAMA Zac Efron has already signed on to play the giraffe. He's looking to make a comeback. END.