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July 2019
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Aerden [userpic]
Writing Blahs

Not much is happening, today. Paul has been bugging me to write him, but the story I want to write isn't working out--I can't make the logistics work--so I'm reluctant to even begin it, even though I want to write something, anything, about him.

*inspiration* I'm going to see if the people at write_away have any good writing exercise ideas. Maybe that will help.

It's either that or go nuts, today.

Was discussing this with baghdaelf:

Aerden: A reasonable evil character for this game would be some small-time extortionist or blackmailer. But I'm not interested in writing those. No, I want to write a villain with brilliance and grandeur. (g) Operatic. A pimp in a very rough brothel doesn't do it, for me.

Baghdaelf: So what does>?

Aerden: Someone who has deep conflicts within himself about whether to do good or evil. Someone who is capable of doing both, for his own reasons. Someone who doesn't compromise his moral code, whatever that code is. Someone who is not in it for money, power, sexual gratification, etc., but for something deeper. See my problem?

At 2:40pm: You know, I'm going about this all wrong. I'm thinking about Paul, but I'm not giving thought to the other characters who'll need to be in the story, or what the plot should be. I need to get my head out of my ass. Who is his opposition?

The qualities I described above could in fact be components of any villain, even a brothel-keeper, if he's written well enough. So why do I want to write a character on the par of Professor Moriarty?

At 4:15pm: I'm working on an idea, now. I haven't written anything yet; am just mulling over how to set things up in my head. But I at least have something to work with, finally.

Current Mood: frustratedfrustrated
writing babble

Oddly enough, I'm flist swapping. LOL. I already hang out in everyone's flist but my own!

You know, IMO you should play to your strengths. Don't get frustrated when you see the whole pile of Plot, Setting, Theme sitting there not being done. Put it on a to-do list, but hey Rome wasn't built in a day. If you need to start with internal monologue, then do it.

Anime, oddly enough, is full of the characters you're searching for. They do love their angst... I think what you're saying is, how will my villain (or anti-hero) find something outside himself to justify his actions? Whatever it is, it has to be more important than his conscience.

Now if you want grandeur, you usually need *power*. Why does he need power? To protect someone? To work for a dead friend's ideals? To protect his organization? Because it's the only life he knows and he craves security? The list is endless. But you gotta stick with the reason. It's supposed to override his conscience, right? And the plot, the setting, the conflict... all that comes from the fact that it doesn't override automatically.

Consistent motive is important for what you want to attempt. A trickster-villain is the sort who's inconsistent and, given your musings, usually too "small-time" for your tastes. (That sort will stoop to anything if it's the path of least resistance, which is usually always the evil path.)

Anyway, in my experience shooting for grandeur usually won't produce it. It's too easy to make them a parody of themselves. Instead think about power, and don't initially label it good/evil. Power's like any other tool -- it does stuff to/for you and you do stuff to/for it.

Once you have that brainstorm down, *then* start thinking about plot, setting, theme. Make up your wishlist first, then figure out "How will I do that?" That's how you can solve for any world- and/or story-building while starting from any story angle, be it character, a scene, a setting, a situation.