Friday, July 16, 2010

Writing Tip -- Protagonist

Once you have your idea for a novel, you need a person through whose eyes the reader will see the story unfold. There can be more than one main character and each one must tie into the idea in some way. In romances, there are usually two -- the heroine and the hero. What a writer needs to decide is how each fits into the idea. In romances, usually the idea is love winning out. In a mystery there are often the hero/heroine and the villain. Each fits a facet of the idea. Crime does or does not pay.

I sometimes write stories with many main characters. The idea here is that each must fit the idea. In the YA I'm working on, the fourth of the story the main idea is good versus evil and this often fits into the fantasy novel as an idea but I have given my young protagonists affinities with the elements -- Earth, Air, Water and Fire. So here there are a number of ideas that must be blended into the major idea. Hard work but slowly I'm getting there. Because there are a number of protagonists on the hero/heroine side, there are a number of villains. In this cast only one has a viewpoint and that is in the final book. He has been designed to fit into the idea of the book which started with my imagining what if someone could control Earth, Air, Fire and Water.

2 comments:

Wendy Marcus said...

I like to read books by Robyn Carr. She often times has a cast of characters and tells her stories from several POVs, usually four from a major and minor love story, sometimes more. I hope to write this way someday. Now, writing category, you are only allowed two POVs,

Terri said...

With a romance, I'd rather just see things from the h/h POV to maintain that core focus. A villain, occasionally, and if brief. But I don't mind with other types of genres, in general. James Lee Burke does this stunningly well with his Dave Robicheaux series. But he's a stunningly brilliant writer. Even though it's hardboiled genre fiction, it's written as lyrically and superbly as lit-fic. He generally does Dave in first person, others in third person. Totally works. But he's a master.