Thursday, September 30, 2010
You think you're Finished ... and then Reality Bites
I had planned to start writing book two today, but some feed back I got at our critique group on Tuesday night got me thinking.
Apparently hints about my villain's motivations weren't stressed enough in the story. Drostan is coming across like an atypical bad guy, too brutal with out any redeeming human qualities.
Sigh and groan and tear at my hair.
No one wants to be accused of creating a one dimensional villain!
My villain isn't really worse than any other medieval warlord out of the pages of our own history - they did monstrous things at times but they also had families, loves and flaws.
I have failed to show the other facets of Drostan's personality. After all the reader can only know of him what I, the writer, chose to reveal!
I might know what makes him tick - what motivates him, what inspires him, what he fears and what he dreams for himself and the people he loves - but that doesn't much help the reader if I don't show any of it.
Sure, he is the conqueror and a murderer, but that's not the sum of who he is. He is more than that. He is a man, with human desires and weaknesses. I need to stress these more ... and I can't wait until the second book to do it.
I don't need the reader to like my villain, but I want them to understand what motivates him ... and maybe even pity him.
So today, instead of beginning work on book two, I've started writing a short series of small chapters that will allow us to spend more time with Drostan, for better or worse.