Character issues


To grant my readers a tiny snapshot of what’s been going on in my head today, here are some lyrics from songs which all fit my mood at some point in time within the last 24 hrs:

“I’m everything I am because you loved me…”

“I am a rockstar. I got my rock moves and I don’t want you tonight. I’m alright…”

“And I dub thee unforgiven…”

“‘Cause I am your lady and you are my man, whenever you reach for me I’ll do all that I can…”

Oh, you noticed the yo-yo? Yeah, me too.

The other day I referred to my life as a book and thought that perhaps the problem with my conflicting inner dialogue is a lack of character insight. What type of character should the great writer in the sky aim for?

Well, I decided to contemplate some popular and literary heroines and see if I found one which handled things in a way I could simulate.

1) Princess Leia, from Star Wars, the original self-rescuing princess.

Sounds perfect, right? Well, until you get to the part where Han takes forever to get up the guts to marry her and does so only after she agrees to a political marriage with some dude from a planet seeking an alliance.

Nope.

2) Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind. She survived the Civil War and stuff.  Uhm, I never read the book and felt the urge to strangle her the entire movie. She jerked Rett Butler around and I totally don’t blame him for leaving.

Nope.

3) Phèdre from Jacquiline Carey’s Kushiel’s Legacy series. Well, she survives a bunch of hardships and climbs to power, but she pretty much boinks her way through life in ways I don’t really want to imagine. I think in book three the dude she loves takes off for some religious crusade. I haven’t read more so I don’t know if the two of them ever stop angsting.

Nope.

4) Mackayla Lane  from the Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series. She starts off as Barbie Girl and she and Barrons dance around each other, both denying any interest in each other for, oh like four books, fall in love,  and then she frigging KILLS him—not on purpose of course. They do get their happy immortal ever-after though.

I’m not very rainbow girl and stalking the streets for invisible otherworldly creatures would totally interfere with my beauty sleep, and possibly get me arrested. Not to mention, HER hero never, ever, ever ditches her.

5) Bella Swan from Twilight. Yes, I read the series and would sooner sprout purple horns than be that clingy and whiny. Need I say more?

NOPE.

6) Sarah Connor from Terminator. Her love gets killed by an evil robot. She spends the rest of her life alternately kicking ass, escaping mental hospitals, and hoarding weapons for the day Skynet takes over the world.

Running from the law is only cool in movies. Although if someone has an evil robot handy, maybe I could work with that.

7) Cleopatra from Marc Antony. She ruled Egypt, had Roman Emperors and Generals as lovers,  and killed herself with an adder.

I think I’ll pass.

8) Eliza Doolittle from My Fair Lady. Well, she does seize an opportunity to educate herself, but then she either ends up with a jackass in Professor Higgins, if you follow the musical plot, or the doofus young man which was the original  plot and remains trapped by the conventions of her time.

Yeah, nope.

9) Mulan. She has to pretend to be a boy for anyone to take her seriously. Yet, she saves China in spite of the male idiocy. Still, she goes home to what, live a normal life? The sequel was just an attempt to squeeze out a few more dollars, as it really didn’t solve Mulan’s issue of her being a female in a male dominated world. Sure, she managed to maneuver some political machinations which let three princesses marry for love, but at the cost of offering herself up for marriage instead. She’s saved by her magic dragon, Mushu.

I haven’t been able to pass for a boy since I hit 12 and have no interest in doing so. Do taxes count as offering yourself up to a politician? If so, where’s my dragon?

Nope.

10) Seven of Nine from Star Trek Voyager. She’s assimilated by an alien race bent on subjugating every living thing in the galaxy, used as a drone in that task, and then somehow gets taken back by the crew of Voyager. (I missed that episode 😦 ) She’s a kickass crew member when not trying to assimilate them and her interpersonal skills make Spock look like a barrel of laughs. Granted, she learns, eventually, and even falls in love. It requires a minor illegal time travel expedition for Captain Janeway to keep her from dying though.

I’d like to think I have decent interpersonal skills and seeing as how I have no time machine handy, next….

I have come to the conclusion that there are too few strong female leads to find an applicable template. The writers in the sky had best pick a dang direction and go with it.

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4 responses to “Character issues

  1. I really enjoy your writing. You remind me of a friend from college.

  2. Create your own template then.

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