1. If something would be boring and/or undramatic for a male character, it would probably be boring and/or undramatic for a female character. If you’re writing a female character (particularly in a major role), I’d recommend thinking about whether you’d want to read…
This is the kind of stuff I say on Twitter, if you were curious.
Since I can never let anything go and I get weirdly self-conscious whenever my commentary starts to spread around the internet, I thought it’d be a good time to elaborate on these two quippy tweets I made the other day.
This is a point I make with some frequency, although it’s kind of divorced of context here because, you know, Twitter. Basically, I get a really bad case of eyeroll whenever I see/hear people complaining about how the romance/love triangle in THG was “unnecessary” or “annoying” or any of the other million words people use to say they think the series would have been better if Katniss was a lone fox who never kissed anyone.
Here are my main problems with this.
1) The initial “romance” between Katniss and Peeta was LITERALLY STAGED. SHE DIDN’T REALLY CARE OR WANT TO DO IT. There’s an entire subplot dedicated to Peeta’s sadfeels about the fact that Katniss wasn’t really into him and did it for the cameras/survival.
2) The subsequent actual developed romance between both Gale and Peeta was about a frightened, confused teenage girl hashing out some very complicated feelings about life, death, love, and friendship/family. The girl was loaded with a whole lot of baggage she didn’t ask for or deserve. I’m perfectly okay with her wanting to kiss a boy once in a while as escapism or just getting a jolly in amidst the misery. If I were a teenager whose life was in literal danger all the time, I’d want some nice memories, too.
3) Anyone who’s actually read the books knows that, comparatively speaking, the “romance” takes up very little of the series. It’s a subplot at best. She does have feelings for and cares for both boys, who have very intimate, personal ties to her and her constant near-death experiences. Sue her or something.
4) In my mind, Gale/Peeta has always been a metaphor of choice between revenge and healing for Katniss. That’s how I read it. I hate seeing it reduced to some throwaway kissy-face to appeal to the teenybopper girls or whatever.
5) The “Team Peeta vs Team Gale” stuff has always been spearheaded by the media, not the series itself.
These are the reasons I tend to eyeroll whenever The Hunger Games is criticized for being too heavy on the romance, or Collins accused of bowing to the corporate publishers’ desire for sexy kissy-time. It grates on me.
THAT SAID, the context of these particular tweets is steeped partially in these observations, and also in some other, overreaching personal observations. As background, I first read 1984 as a 17-year-old senior in my AP English unit of utopian/dystopian literature. I loved the book. LOVED it. Liked it more than Brave New World, which I also read during that same unit. I have no doubt that it was formative in my love of dystopian literature.
To get this out of the way, I’ll admit that every time I make this point, I *always* hear the following arguments:
You can’t compare 1984 to The Hunger Games because one’s a literary classic and one’s a contemporary commercial bestseller.
You can’t compare them because the context in which they’re read is different and THG is at the forefront of media and fandom in the modern age, while 1984 isn’t read that way.
And here’s my response to those arguments: that’s not the context in which I’m making the commentary here. I’m fully aware that it’s pretty much impossible to accurately compare the two works because they’re from different times and often read in wildly different contexts (academic vs pop culture). But that’s also part of the issue.
Academia is not some untouchable monolith whose intentions are always pure and true, first of all. Academia is far and away influenced by carefully selected “quality” literature filtered through a lot of sieves that end up producing a lot of books by white guys. We’re at a period in history where the past is largely overwhelmed by dominant voices and minority voices are still only just being recognized as worthy, when they’re recognized at all. Books we consider classics today are classics because we’re told they’re classics. They’re the books that survived and were labeled “literature.”
I’m not here to argue that THG is destined to become a classic. Probably not. But who knows? Ultimately, my argument is that these two books are books that we feed teenagers. They read 1984 for class as assigned reading, they read THG at home for pleasure. The context is that we make snide remarks about a teenage girl written by a woman as having needless romantic entanglements that muddy the story, while we teach that the man sleeping with a woman is expressing love in a society devoid of it.
We read Winston and Julia as metaphors, as foils, as illustrations of the opposing themes of the novel. This is what we tell young adults reading the book for the first time — this relationship is a metaphor, it has a purpose.
Katniss’ relationships, however, are stupid. Pointless. Meaningless fluff to appeal to girls and distract from the “real” story. This is what we’re telling young adults, too. That THIS relationship, in THIS dystopia, in THIS context, is totally the worst and not worthy of exploration.
Time and time again, I hear people argue that men who wrote the literary classics knew how to write love/sex without making it “distracting” from the core literary thread. Ladies, however, remain the damned mob of scribbling women who can’t write a single kiss scene without it ruining an otherwise worthwhile story.
Can we really compare 1984 and The Hunger Games? I think so, on some level. They’re the same genre. They explore similar themes of destructive totalitarian governments and oppressed citizens. There’s love, hate, betrayal, destruction, misery. It’s not a far stretch, really.
Can they ever play on the same field? Well, I don’t know. We don’t really let them, do we? 1984 is removed because it’s an academic classic engrained in our curriculum because somewhere down the line someone thought it was worth it. We don’t have to give THG that distinction. We can write it off.
(And before people argue that 1984 is THE dystopian novel, I’ll just remind you that dystopia in fiction existed decades earlier)
Can we argue they’re the same quality with the same teaching potential? Yeah, I think we can. They’re different, certainly, but we have a tendency to write off modern literature as lacking when compared to the classics. We do it in art, in literature, in music… always. Nothing that’s made today is ever good enough to compare. Except that it is, and some of the art we create today WILL survive and WILL be “classic” a century from now. It all depends on how the cards shake out, doesn’t it?
Anyway. I’m rambling. This is why I don’t try to make elaborate arguments on Twitter. That’s what my Tumblr’s for.
THESE ARE MY THOUGHTS, I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THEM. If people want to make counter-arguments, that’s cool. I laid my cards on the table. Let it lead to wherever.
re-reblogging for Steph’s elaboration and smarts.
Writers can use these 12 Archetypes to create characters
The 12 Common Archetypes by Carl Golden
The twelve archetypes are divided into ego types, self types, and soul types.
1) The Four Ego Types
1. The Innocent
Motto: Free to be you and me
Core desire: to get to paradise
Goal: to be happy
Greatest fear: to be punished for doing something bad or wrong
Strategy: to do things right
Weakness: boring for all their naive innocence
Talent: faith and optimism
The Innocent is also known as: Utopian, traditionalist, naive, mystic, saint, romantic, dreamer.
2. The Orphan/Regular Guy or Gal
Motto: All men and women are created equal
Core Desire: connecting with others
Goal: to belong
Greatest fear: to be left out or to stand out from the crowd
Strategy: develop ordinary solid virtues, be down to earth, the common touch
Weakness: losing one’s own self in an effort to blend in or for the sake of superficial relationships
Talent: realism, empathy, lack of pretence
The Regular Person is also known as: The good old boy, everyman, the person next door, the realist, the working stiff, the solid citizen, the good neighbour, the silent majority.
3. The Hero
Motto: Where there’s a will, there’s a way
Core desire: to prove one’s worth through courageous acts
Goal: expert mastery in a way that improves the world
Greatest fear: weakness, vulnerability, being a “chicken”
Strategy: to be as strong and competent as possible
Weakness: arrogance, always needing another battle to fight
Talent: competence and courage
The Hero is also known as: The warrior, crusader, rescuer, superhero, the soldier, dragon slayer, the winner and the team player.
4. The Caregiver
Motto: Love your neighbour as yourself
Core desire: to protect and care for others
Goal: to help others
Greatest fear: selfishness and ingratitude
Strategy: doing things for others
Weakness: martyrdom and being exploited
Talent: compassion, generosity
The Caregiver is also known as: The saint, altruist, parent, helper, supporter.
2) The Four Soul Types
5. The Explorer
Motto: Don’t fence me in
Core desire: the freedom to find out who you are through exploring the world
Goal: to experience a better, more authentic, more fulfilling life
Biggest fear: getting trapped, conformity, and inner emptiness
Strategy: journey, seeking out and experiencing new things, escape from boredom
Weakness: aimless wandering, becoming a misfit
Talent: autonomy, ambition, being true to one’s soul
The explorer is also known as: The seeker, iconoclast, wanderer, individualist, pilgrim.
6. The Rebel
Motto: Rules are made to be broken
Core desire: revenge or revolution
Goal: to overturn what isn’t working
Greatest fear: to be powerless or ineffectual
Strategy: disrupt, destroy, or shock
Weakness: crossing over to the dark side, crime
Talent: outrageousness, radical freedom
The Outlaw is also known as: The rebel, revolutionary, wild man, the misfit, or iconoclast.
7. The Lover
Motto: You’re the only one
Core desire: intimacy and experience
Goal: being in a relationship with the people, work and surroundings they love
Greatest fear: being alone, a wallflower, unwanted, unloved
Strategy: to become more and more physically and emotionally attractive
Weakness: outward-directed desire to please others at risk of losing own identity
Talent: passion, gratitude, appreciation, and commitment
The Lover is also known as: The partner, friend, intimate, enthusiast, sensualist, spouse, team-builder.
8. The Creator
Motto: If you can imagine it, it can be done
Core desire: to create things of enduring value
Goal: to realize a vision
Greatest fear: mediocre vision or execution
Strategy: develop artistic control and skill
Task: to create culture, express own vision
Weakness: perfectionism, bad solutions
Talent: creativity and imagination
The Creator is also known as: The artist, inventor, innovator, musician, writer or dreamer.
3) The Four Self Types
9. The Jester
Motto: You only live once
Core desire: to live in the moment with full enjoyment
Goal: to have a great time and lighten up the world
Greatest fear: being bored or boring others
Strategy: play, make jokes, be funny
Weakness: frivolity, wasting time
The Jester is also known as: The fool, trickster, joker, practical joker or comedian.
10. The Sage
Motto: The truth will set you free
Core desire: to find the truth.
Goal: to use intelligence and analysis to understand the world.
Biggest fear: being duped, misled—or ignorance.
Strategy: seeking out information and knowledge; self-reflection and understanding thought processes.
Weakness: can study details forever and never act.
Talent: wisdom, intelligence.
The Sage is also known as: The expert, scholar, detective, advisor, thinker, philosopher, academic, researcher, thinker, planner, professional, mentor, teacher, contemplative.
11. The Magician
Motto: I make things happen.
Core desire: understanding the fundamental laws of the universe
Goal: to make dreams come true
Greatest fear: unintended negative consequences
Strategy: develop a vision and live by it
Weakness: becoming manipulative
Talent: finding win-win solutions
The Magician is also known as: The visionary, catalyst, inventor, charismatic leader, shaman, healer, medicine man.
12. The Ruler
Motto: Power isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.
Core desire: control
Goal: create a prosperous, successful family or community
Strategy: exercise power
Greatest fear: chaos, being overthrown
Weakness: being authoritarian, unable to delegate
Talent: responsibility, leadership
The Ruler is also known as: The boss, leader, aristocrat, king, queen, politician, role model, manager or administrator.
Note: There are four cardinal orientations: freedom, social, ego, order. The types have a place on these orientations.
Article via soulcraft.co
So my historical costuming resources list from 2011 was less than a page long- I’m not saying that I’ve learned a lot in the past three years, but this list is now sitting pretty at a solid nine pages. Whew. And people wonder why I want to redo this damn series.
I guess it’s that time of year again. I’ve been asked several times in the last few months if I would do another critique partner love connection on my blog and I now have enough requests that I’m going to go ahead and do it. These seems to be a yearly thing. I don’t think I need to change the…
If you’re a Maggie Stiefvater fan, here’s another option if you’re looking for a critique partner. :)
go-away-to-neverland asked: Do you have any posts on arranged marriages?
Types of Arranged Marriages:
- Political: This marriage occurs for political reasons, usually within nobility. If only one spouse is nobility, the other will most likely be quite wealthy or at least part of a prominent and respected family. The reasons behind this can be to keep the blood “noble” or to strengthen political allies and power.
- Familial: Sometimes two families that are friends will arrange two of their children to get married to unite those two families.
- Financial: Similar to political marriages, but with money in its place. This is common among wealthier people, often in patriarchal societies where a daughter of a wealthy family will marry the son of another wealthy family.
- Religious/Spiritual/Ethnic: Have you seen My Big Fat Greek Wedding? The father tries to set his daughter up with a lot of Greek men for marriage. This is to keep a certain ethnicity or religion within the family, usually in immigrant families. However, arranged marriages in which the third party is a religious affiliate can fall under this category.
- Match Maker: This is like the beginning of Mulan, where a match maker meets with potential spouses and sets them up with someone else. This can happen at any age.
- Tradition: Some cultures have arranged marriages simply because it’s tradition. All of the above factors may play a part in these arrangements.
- Forced/Suggested: All of the examples above are either forced marriages or heavy suggestions. Sometimes a spouse is able to say no without repercussions. Sometimes they can say no, but will have consequences for doing so. Sometimes they cannot say no and must marry the spouse picked for them.
- More than one of the above can be used as reasons in an arranged marriage.The Arrangers:A third party makes the arrangement. This third party can be as little as one person or a group of people. When the third party is one person, that person is usually experienced in doing this or has a good reason to be matching up people for marriage. Groups of people who decide are often families, mostly the parents and sometimes the aunt and uncles.Age of Arrangement:People can be put in arranged marriages at any age, though the marriage does not have to happen right away. Some are matched just after birth and some are matched a few months or even weeks before the wedding.First Meeting:Going back to the option of saying “no” to a potential spouse, there is an arranged marriage that is not forced. This is common in many cultures. The parents (or some other third party) set up the potential spouses with the hope they will get married one day. However, after setting up that first meeting, it’s up to the potential spouses to decide if they wish to get married or not. However, that doesn’t mean they decide on the first day. Some cultures do and some will allow for extensive dating.Other first meetings vary greatly. Sometimes the spouses are not allowed to meet until just before the wedding or even on the wedding day. There may be a meeting of both families in which the spouses meet for the first time. However, there are also cases in which the spouses grow up knowing each other. This is common when families make the arrangement whether when the spouses are children or adults.
slowlysinkingunder asked: I finished my first book and I’m going to print it out later and start editing Monday (one day break haha). Anyway, what are your suggestions on editing the first draft? Should I read it through the first time and try not to…
A few things to think about as you write your novel…
Below, we’ve listed some common sins that can detract from enjoyment of a fight scene. As always, rules are made to be broken. It’s also worth understanding something, before you try though.
Why Are You Thinking? We Should Be Fighting!
When working on a fight scene, it’s best to write the…