Swamp Thing!

Finally, I am in the swamp. I don't know why this one is going so hard. Today I took a bit of time to go back and do a few revisions on the beginning. I don't usually do that - rough draft is rough draft, fix it later - but a few problems are nagging at me.

For one thing, Kancethedrus and Tam were turning into carbon copies of each other. When I am essentially flipping a coin to decide who will say X line, I'm in trouble. I decided to smarten Kance up a bit, cutting his first line, which was essentially making him out to be Mongo the Dunce. He stays clumsy, though - that endears him to me, that and his crush on Alesia.

Tam, however, is giving me fits.

In the last day or so, I read an excellent blog post about creating a hero. I've gone back 500 entries on my reading list and I can't find it. But the basic upshot was, quite often you have a hero whose only recommending characteristic is that the author says he's a hero. All the other characters say he's a hero. Everyone agrees he's a terrific guy. So why does the reader wish he'd strangle on his medals?

Tam's not annoying, but he's not a person yet, either. He did great in the opening scene - stood up for Truth Justice What Have You right away. That's supposed to tell us he's a hero. That, and his love for Wynter, which is the driving force behind the quest.

But we have to get why Alesia and Kancethedrus are willing to risk their lives for him, why they love him enough to go through the hell I'm about to inflict on them. We've got to get it, and Tam has to be worth it. Right now, he's worth it because I say he is.

Giving me fits, I tell you.

The good news is, I've got additional antagonists. With the addition of a little bourbon and a quick flip through the sourcebook, I managed to get Ruebel back in the game AND keep him from screwing with the plot too much. I'm not sure what he's going to do in the final analysis, and I hope the Powers That Be don't mind me deviating a bit from the outline. But I needed a bit of urgency for the departure and I needed Tam and Alesia to solve a minor problem on their own. Ruebel's racist ass provided an excellent opportunity. Plus I got to use a cliche pun.

I think I'm going to go watch some more postapocalypse in the hopes of luring the Muse back. I could use her help with Tam. At any rate, we've finally made it into the swamp, 25 percent of the way through this thing. The word "finally" does not begin to describe it. Enough character-building for now - let's go meet the Darkhoppers.

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
12,789 / 50,000

P.S. Both Patrick Sweeney and Parish Roberts are fired from the name pool. Except I already named characters after the both of them. Cody the Weregator, indeed.


  1. Anonymous1:09 AM

    Perhaps Tam is like the biblical Noah - he is notable not because of what he is, but what he isn't...

    Or even Buffy... There was always the comparison - especially between her and Giles, Faith, and later on, even Willow... Buffy seems incapable of evil, and that is what truly defines her as a hero...

    Perhaps right now we don't know so much about Tam - but that over time - as he is confronted with challenges and adversaries - we will learn what he is made of, and why Kan and Alesia stick with him...


Post a Comment