Ypulse Interviews Hollywood Screenwriter, Kirsten Smith

Ypulse had the pleasure of sitting down with Hollywood screenwriter and American novelist, Kirsten Smith; responsible for teen hit sensations like 10 Things I Hate About You and Legally Blonde. Her new book, Trinkets, a tale of three teenage girl shoplifters, is a gritty, dark comedy that takes place in a rich suburb outside of Portland. We had the chance to talk to her about her new book, the politics of making a teenage girl movie (in comparison to a teenage boy movie), the trends of the modern day female, and the cultural shifts of the teenage girl spanning the past two decades. 

YPulse: Trinkets has so far had a great response. Famous blogger Tavi Gevinson said she even wants to devote a “shrine to it”. How was writing it and how are you feeling about the launch?

Kirsten Smith: I’m really excited about it and I am huge fan of Tavi’s. She’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever met, and I know that sounds crazy because she’s 16, but it’s true. 

KS: It was a long journey to write the book because I was in the midst of getting a bunch of screenplays out so it feels amazing to finally get it out there. 

YP: How long did it take you?

KS: 6 years! 

YP: Wow. Did you find yourself fighting with maintaining relevant subject matter? So much has changed in such a short period of time, primarily technology. 

KS: Yes! Well, my friend and former assistant, Hope Leon always jokes that when I started the book, cellphones were the size of a giant purse. It feels true in a way because when I started writing it iPhones or Andriods didn’t even exist. Another way I went around that was that I chose not to focus on the technology aspect. You’ll notice it’s not very tech specific, it’s a little more classic in the way that the characters are operating. 

YP: It’s funny…


Want to talk to us about the article
or dive into a custom study?

Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “Pandora is my favorite app because I LOVE music and creating stations that introduce me to new songs I didn't know about.” –Female, 31, GA

Snapchat, one of Millennial and teens’ top ten favorite apps, has major plans to be the future of media, and make a lot of ad dollars in the meantime. But they’re also trying to turn a profit another way: good old-fashioned merchandise. Snapchat towels are on sale on Amazon, and fans of the platform can also buy official Snapchat plushies. (And no, neither will disappear three seconds after purchasing like the reviews say.) (Digiday)

Speaking of Snapchat…Yahoo’s new Livetext video messaging app is rolling out in countries around the world and trying to appeal to “the Snapchat generation.” Livetext adds video—without sound—to one-on-one texting conversations so that users can see the people they are talking to. Threads disappear after a session is over, but Yahoo says the app isn’t a Snapchat competitor. (Engadget)

Millennials are going to miss Jon Stewart. According to a new poll, one in ten 18-29-year-olds say they trust The Daily Show or now defunct Colbert Report the most to tell them what’s going on in the world. While CNN ranks higher than other traditional channels on the list so “could reap some of these young abandoned viewers,” we think it’s more likely that they’ll continue to use social media and other alternative programs as their news sources. (Washington Post)

Calvin Klein has a long-standing tradition of sex-appeal marketing, and their latest campaign is inspired by sexting and so called hook-up culture. The ads include text screenshots and messages “inspired by real matches, texts + encounters.” The effort is clearly targeting Millennials, who are often believed to live in a casual encounter culture, but we should point out that for many brands these days sex doesn’t sell like it used to. (Business Insider)

Unemployment is reportedly down among young consumers, but that doesn’t mean that more Millennials are moving out of mom and dads. According to Pew analysis, 18-34-year-olds are less likely to be living independently of their families than they were “in the depths of the Great Depression.” In fact, the number heading up their own households has actually decreased during the past few years of supposed economic recovery: in 2015, 67% of Millennials over 18-years-old are living independently, compared to 69% in 2010. (Pew Research)

Quote of the Day: “Google Maps is my GPS and I would be lost without it.” –Female, 22, DE

Sign Up Now

Subscribe for premium access to our content, data, and tools.

Already a subscriber? Sign in.

Upgrade Now

Upgrade for full access to the best marketing tools for understanding the next generation.

View our Client Case Studies