Limyaael

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December 18th, 2009

10:18 am: Rant on flawed characters (again)
Characters in most novels, of course, have to have flaws. Novels exist where they don’t, but often the character is either boringly idealized or part of a historical and cultural context that doesn’t exist in most twenty-first-century Western countries any longer. (Characters like Herman Melville’s Billy Budd and George Eliot’s Eppie are also meant to serve a specific allegorical purpose that’s rare for modern fantasy novels). But it’s also possible to make a character too flawed, or to add only “charming” quirks that don’t actually impact a character’s life in any discernible way. I’m sure you can think of at least one protagonist whose only fault was being too generous, or too kind-hearted. (I will never get back the hours of my life which I wasted reading The Wayfarer Redemption).

Here, then, are some (more) ideas about adding flaws to characters and what to do once you have them.

Read more... )

A rant on loyalty is probably next.

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December 1st, 2009

08:39 pm: Rant on avoiding a villain monologue
I’m sorry to have been gone so long. Major health issues as well as writer’s block on the rants meant that I had little to post. While I think I’ll be posting more regularly again, I can’t promise it.

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This rant brought to you by Magic Bites, an urban fantasy novel that I read recently and liked well enough—with the exception of one major irritant. I bet you can guess right now what it is.

This is a temptation, yes, but there is a difference between feeling it and giving in to it )

Villain monologues irritate me for the same reason that idiot plots do: there’s no reason for them to exist, not when you have so many interesting tricks to avoid them.

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