Let’s Get Freaky

Info on Dark Soldier until I’m off my writing break.

themask

I’m back. So, I want to help the newcomers understand the book a little better. Note: THIS IS FOR NEW FANS. Dark Soldier changed quite a bit from its humble beginnings, but here’s what I’ve ultimately wanted from my readers: I want to freak them out. I want to freak them out in a way they never have been before. This coming from a non-Horror-genre book, it may bother some people. You’re going to…

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Let’s Get Freaky

I’m back.

So, I want to help the newcomers understand the book a little better. Note: THIS IS FOR NEW FANS.

Dark Soldier changed quite a bit from its humble beginnings, but here’s what I’ve ultimately wanted from my readers: I want to freak them out.

I want to freak them out in a way they never have been before. This coming from a non-Horror-genre book, it may bother some people. You’re going to get an antagonist that really gets under your skin. He’s not so terrifying in that he’s messed up in the brain. In fact, that’s not what I want to freak you out with. We’ve seen too many messed-up antagonists.

No, I want to freak you out with the fact that he may be, in fact, perfectly normal.

He makes sense. He isn’t that crazy. He’s just as nuts as any regular person in his situation. He calculates his plans long in advance and doesn’t do the angst thing. He cares about his wife, his family, and all those who work under him. He wakes up, brushes his teeth and gets dressed just like anyone else. And he’ll always be trying to bring you over to his side, not because he’s gathering minions, but because he thinks he’s right.

And the stranger part? The protagonist isn’t too different. They both make good and bad decisions. They both made decisions that the reader’s not going to approve of and ones that they’ll love them for. They’ll even use the exact same phrases at times. They are perhaps scarily human.

So in the end, I want to leave the reader with one question:

What makes a villain?

Give me your thoughts in the comments! And watch for the novel Dark Soldier once it gets published.

The Good, The Bad, and the Kinda-Halfway

My longest post so far. We’re talking heroes, villains and antiheroes.

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This post is on heroes, villains, and anti-heroes. I’m not going to claim I know everything about how to make them. But I have learned some things while writing the Dark Veil saga. I still have a long way to go. This is a compilation of what I’ve learned, and some info on the ones I already have. Heroes are really cool. Whether or not they’ve been damaged, they still fight for the side of good.…

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The Good, The Bad, and the Kinda-Halfway

This post is on heroes, villains, and anti-heroes. I’m not going to claim I know everything about how to make them. But I have learned some things while writing the Dark Veil saga. I still have a long way to go. This is a compilation of what I’ve learned, and some info on the ones I already have.

Heroes are really cool. Whether or not they’ve been damaged, they still fight for the side of good. They are my second-favorite character type to write. They always remain pure. This is clear with characters like Spiderman and Batman. Some say Batman isn’t a good person deep inside. But there is one thing that separates him from the criminals he fights. He refuses to kill. His main goal is to save the innocent, and that is what keeps him good. His moral compass drives him.

There’s something comforting about a hero. It’s nice to know that, no matter what they do, they’re going to try their darndest to do good. You can beat them as hard as you want, but they’ll just look at you with pity. In the end, a hero will really, honestly care about people. All people. That’s something you don’t see in villains or anti-heroes.

A thing that separates a hero from a true hero is determination. They can be beaten, battered, bruised, have their back broken and they still continue fighting. They still stay pure no matter how many chances to do otherwise are thrown at them. It may take a while for them to get to this point. They may be an antihero or even a villain before they come to this spot on their life. But very few, if they are truly good, will stray from this path.

I would say who the heroes are in Dark Veil saga, but to say who stays good and who doesn’t is most definitely a spoiler. That is the saddest part of writing this series. In a world like the Dark Veil saga, there’s not much of a place for heroic types even when I want them there. But they are there, and I think you’ll come to love them just as much as I do.

Villains are still lots of fun to write. It may just be due to a lot of “Criminal Minds” episodes, but I find their logic fascinating. To sum it up in one shot, I must quote one of the greatest.

“I’ve demonstrated there’s no difference between me and anyone else! All it takes is one bad day to reduce the sanest man alive to lunacy. That’s how far the world is from where I am. Just one bad day.” – the Joker, Batman villain

An evil person is, in one way or another, a lunatic. Sometimes it isn’t so clear. In fact, some villains in books that I’ve read are so logical that it’s downright eerie. But deep down inside their psyche, no matter how normal they may seem, something’s off. In the Joker, it’s pretty much everything about him. He desires to kill people and just hates all of humankind. But there’s a great deal of difference between villains like the Joker from Batman and Lex Luthor from Superman. One is so cold and calculated that few might notice his villainy unless they’d been around him for a while. The other is so insane that nobody would recognize a shred of sanity until they’d been around him a while.

Take Jigsaw, for example, the Saw villain who inspired the Dark Veil saga’s Trizkol. I have not seen the movies, as I think the brutality they include is completely disgusting and just for shock value. A part of him makes logical sense. People who do bad things ought to have some form of justice – whether it’s simply being told that they are in the wrong or being put in jail. But the extent to which he goes to make it happen is pure insanity. He is a good example of the eerie calculated villain. I personally think that these sorts are far creepier than the insane ones. It’s the ones that aren’t pure evil that are harder to want to kill.

Finally, there is the anti-hero. The anti-hero is the most human of all the character types. They are by far my favorite to write, and I have a good lot of them in the Dark Veil saga. They’re complex people. They aren’t black and white. They are, in fact, basically neutral. They’re not striving for the absolute best or worst decision. They’re just going to make the decisions. They may kill people who they didn’t need to, but they’ll get the job done.

It’s not to say that there are not good people in real life. I’m not even saying that all anti-heroes are bad people. But they don’t have to be choirboys either. With characters like Rorschach, it’s due to a troubled childhood. The ones who have good intentions will go to extreme lengths to take down the bad guys. Those without good intentions are often in it for themselves. They basically do whatever they feel like but they’ll still do the good thing on occasion.

The closest to this archetype in the Dark Veil saga are the characters Addom and Ashlin. They care less about honor and more about taking down those they consider bad people. They don’t really care about the suffering of people involved along the way. They haven’t been treated well by people for a very long time. They were thought to be monsters. But they think of normal humans the same way. So, rather than being swayed by what these annoying humans are telling them… they just do whatever they want.

I enjoy writing these types not for their decisions, but for their complexity of character. They’re messed up, and it isn’t hard to tell. They’re damaged by a cruel world. They don’t have always have one distinct pathway that they desire to follow. Villains want to be bad. Heroes want to be good. Antiheroes are just kind of… there. There is more room for a realistic human in an antihero. Whether they are mostly good or mostly bad, every human has a ying and a yang. Antiheroes show both of those sides a bit more equally.

Wow. This was my longest post yet. Admittedly, I had a lot to say. What do you think about all this. What’s your favorite type of character to write or read? Let me know in the comments below!

I NEED To Write

Due to complications, we haven’t posted things for days. Here’s to make up for that.

vvampire elf

I’m going to do a bit of a rant, if you all don’t mind. I say that the second draft is different. I mention that a lot. But just howdifferent is different? Different enough that, honestly, if I don’t get my first chapter’s edits back, I’m just going to start rewriting within a couple days. So much has to be redone. All of it. I’m sure that I’m more interested in writing this than you all may be…

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I NEED To Write

I’m going to do a bit of a rant, if you all don’t mind. I say that the second draft is different. I mention that a lot. But just how different is different? Different enough that, honestly, if I don’t get my first chapter’s edits back, I’m just going to start rewriting within a couple days. So much has to be redone. All of it. I’m sure that I’m more interested in writing this than you all may be by reading it at this point, but it must get out there.

Continue reading “I NEED To Write”

Films and Finals

Ah, finals. The bane of humanity has reared its depressing head and plans to squash all hopes of me saving the semester. But I will prevail, as most tend to do and if all I do is pass at this point, I think I should be ok.

This is mainly because a lot of things are pressing down at once. A teaser trailer for the novel Dark Soldier coming 2016 is in production and searching for a deep-voiced speaker to voice the character portrayed. We only have the rest of the December to get it done. At the same time is finals, and you can just imagine how that is pressing down. It’s not a very happy time in my life, to be honest, but I seem to be managing.

I will give a couple spoilers as to what exactly is happening in the teaser. First of all, as I mentioned, this deep-voiced intimidating character is going to be the spotlight. He’s the only character in it, after all. Very minimalist visuals will be involved, but a brief glimpse of a dark throne is likely going to be involved. The scene it is taken from is described like this:

“Far from Oriwind, a hooded figure in a grey cloak walked down a hallway. Its floor was paved in gold. Its golden walls were decorated with all sorts of trinkets from other lands; shields, paintings, rugs and masks hung in rows. Doors were scarce. Those that existed were framed in swirling, decorative borders made of the finest ruby.

At the end of the hall stood a giant pair of doors, decorated like the others, and no different in their size and its placement. The hooded figure lifted its sleeves, revealing two smoke-black hands. It pushed open the door.

What the door opened to was an even larger hallway, with red velvet carpeting that lead up to a giant golden throne. There were no windows in the hall, only great lanterns hung on poles that stood rowed along the edges of the carpet. The lanterns gave off an eerie blue flame.”

And yet the character shown is not the hooded figure. It is the one on the throne.

That is all.

Have an excellent rest of the weekend, darklings!