Go ahead and hate

In this past week's #FridayFlash, "A Level-Headed Man", as well as in "Third Shift at McSweeny's" and (to a lesser extent) in "The Death of Lee Harvey Oswald", I gave the reader characters that were supposed to be objects of irritation and dislike, if not actual hate.

By contrast, in "Nearer Comes the Moon", the main character was intended to be sympathetic.

I think I'm having better results writing villains than heroes in these. Is this because it's easier to throw flaws into high relief, or because I'm more familiar with human failings and frailties than with nobility and grace? Deeply flawed bad guys have always struck me as much more interesting, because they seem to lead more active and challenging lives.

Still, you can't have any dynamic tension if it's all bad guys all the time; there would be nothing for them to act in opposition to. Therefore, the challenge for next week will be to create a character that you will like, one you will root for.

As I sit here at this moment, this seems like a more daunting authorial challenge than writing a stimulating yet believable sex scene. (That will come at some point in the future.)


  1. *ducks head in case of shoe throwing incident* I loved the character in Nearer Comes the Moon. I thought that was your best FF so far!

    Anyhoo, writing 'stimulating' sex scenes scare the jejesus out of me, not in the least because my mum might read it! LOL. Good luck with this week's effort.

  2. I liked that guy, too. If I had a plot for him to act within, he'd go pretty far. Lots of inner demons in that one.

    In my first (very crappy) novel, I wrote a rape scene. My mom read the book, and came away with a real antipathy for the rapist, but didn't come away thinking any the less of me.

    I think.


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