Not our characters

Discussion in 'Francis/Julia Knight' started by Kissmequick, Apr 13, 2013.

  1. Kissmequick

    Kissmequick loony

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    Thanks to Mark Lawrence (whose forum this might properly belong, please move mods, if you so desire)

    However, after a long discussion here, and a few PMs, Mark has written a post about how authors are generally not their characters, starting from the point of a review I had that conflated me and my character, Rojan. Easily done, to be fair, but not always the case.
     
  2. allmywires

    allmywires Well-Known Member

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    Interesting.

    It's something I think actors get much of the brunt for - I remember reading that Jack Gleeson, who plays Joffrey in GoT, gets a lot of hate by association.

    Authors are not their characters, of course. I could write a rampantly misogynistic character and that doesn't make me a misogynist. But for me the problem is motivation. What makes you want to write a character like that? Is it to show they can change? Is it to use other characters to show how your misogynist is in the wrong? Or is it just to be misogynist for the sake of it? Readers can't always make that distinction, but with things such as redemption it should become clearer.

    I'm not even sure if this was what you were intending to discuss but it's just my thoughts on the matter.
     
  3. Kissmequick

    Kissmequick loony

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    Both of those, and other reasons. Some more subtle than others. I could go on for hours. But at least partly to twist it so it showed very vividly a certain type of guy (Rojan is based on someone IRL), and by other characters show he's not right. And then to get under his skin and understand why he might be like that. That every guy, no matter their stance on anything, is the hero of their own story. That many people,if you get past their wall ( a subtle theme in the books), are they just human and therefore sympathetic because imperfect? Can I understand/like this guy (even if I wouldn't date him)? Despite everything? It was a challenge to myself, if I'm honest. Can I do this?.

    PS
    All I will say is that Rojan..ack I can't, it''ll ruin it! Um, Rojan does not profit from being he way he is.
     
  4. Kissmequick

    Kissmequick loony

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    A little update, because I've been in quite a few conversations this week about both this blog post and other aspects (of sexism in media) and particularly a couple of email convos winkled a few new thoughts out of my brain :D I shall probably blog about it (coming soon, the excitingly titled What We Mean When We Say Sexism) and will clarify on Mark's blog too but someone suggested I might want to clarify what I mean when I say that Rojan is sexist, because there's a whole range of sexist behaviours, some more acceptable than others and what I think is sexist, others may not.

    So, when I say that Rojan is sexist, I'm not saying that he hates women, abuses them* he demeans them or thinks they should all be quiet and make his sandwiches, or that he thinks they shouldn't bother having an opinion. He doesn't patronise them (or tries not to), or ignore them. (Tbh, no matter how big of a challenge that would be to make a guy like that sympathetic, I'd want to brain an MC like that waaay before the end of the book!)

    At the start of the books, Rojan is a philanderer, but that doesn't especially make him sexist (as someone pointed out to me git doesn't always equal sexist), or no more than say Jack Sparrow -- in fact there are similarities between the two. However Rojan is ..obtuse about women. In short, he's a rogue that would have trouble grasping the concept of privilege if you shovelled it into his brain with a trowel.

    *except in a love them and leave them way.

    And this is getting long, so I shall leave the rest for my blog post.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2013
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