Adan Ramie has been awesome enough to have me for her Spotlight Saturday where we are discussing complex characters in speculative fiction – a genre that has so much room for complexities but often lacks them.
Characters. No matter the genre – or medium – of your story, characters are important. They have the job of presenting the plot, and a well written story feels like it is driven and ruled by their motives and personalities. Unfortunately, with only so much “face time”, rushed plots, and in some cases just poor writing, characters often end up one dimensional.
The basic characters of a story can be broken down into the old archetypes of the black and white cliffhangers. There’s the “good guy”, the “bad guy”, and generally someone “in distress”. Though these character types are present in every story in one form or another, they are most easily recognized in speculative fiction such as fantasy, sci-fi, or paranormal stories. With the focus of many of these kinds of stories being on the adventure, things like motives sometimes get tossed to the wind. Oftentimes the villain is evil just because he is evil, the good guy is good just to be good, and for the sake of goodness he helps out whoever or whatever is in distress (whether it’s a village under threat from an invading hoard, native aliens threatened by unscrupulous earth men, or a human hunted by evil vampires).
Keep reading at Adan’s blog! And while you’re there, check out her amazing writing!