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Thursday, April 4, 2013

Oh yeah...I need a title. Um...this will suffice!

On facebook this morning, I saw a thing that said: “Writers must be fair and remember even bad guys (most of them, anyway) see themselves as good --- they are the heroes of their own lives.” I wrote some thoughts about it and reposted it…but I wanted to write an actual blog on the subject, because I believe in it very strongly, and it is a foundational part of my story.

…Okay. I have three main groups in my story --- humans, creatures, and other creatures; they are all, to put it mildly, enemies. When I began writing it, I knew I didn’t want it to be a good vs. evil thing; I didn’t want it to be so black and white. Gray is far more realistic, and even though it is fantasy, it MUST be realistic.

But, naturally, as I began delving into the world of the one creatures, I started seeing them as the “good guys”; and, consequently, I started looking at the humans as the “bad guys”. I planned to kill most of them at the end…and, honestly, I was very much fine with that. [And I do not easily kill characters.]

I’m not sure what happened first, but two things took place pretty close together: I decided to bring back a certain [human] guy, and I realized something about another.

…And that…blew everything out of the water.

As I thought more about the personalities of these two guys, I realized something about my humans on the whole:

They don’t think they are bad.

The vast majority of them believe they’re the good guys, that they are protecting their people, securing the future. They call themselves the saviors not so much because they are arrogant, but because they truly believe that that is what they are. They are brainwashed, horribly misguided…but they aren’t evil.

And this, truly, has changed everything. The entire plot of the story…is far different now than it was before.

And I am different now than I was before. I am living through what my characters will soon live through, discovering what they will discover --- that it is all about the heart. The humans and the creatures are the same, at the core.

…And I love them all. Like, I really, really love them. I hate what they are doing, hate what most of them are…but I love them. I want to save them all, and it truly saddens me to know that I can’t; to know that, if this story is to be realistic…I can’t have a happy ending where everyone is saved and they all live together in peace. [Sigh.] Some are too stubborn, too hurt, too angry, too prideful. Some will die in their refusal, just like real people will die refusing the redemption and life offered them.

…And the ones standing at the end…will be ones who have raped, murdered, deceived, stolen, been prideful, and been hateful. …Human and creature both.

Because it is not about the actions. It is about the heart.

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