Intermission (wherein I lament the addition of a real hero to my collection)

Posted: March 22, 2012 in Heroes, Scribe Scribbles
Tags: , , , , , ,

I worked on  Part three of my King Lear fiction post  conclusion all day yesterday, wound up scrapping it three times, and now only have little shreds of the original thought. Trust me, it’s better that way, for now.  The long and the short of all of the thinking I’ve been doing about the subject has brought along another character to my collection. This happened with much weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth.

Why? Because I am a plot-driven writer, not a character driven writer. The addition of a character to plot makes me sob, throw things, bang my head into my writing table, and drink more coffee than normal.  I do not enjoy world building, it gives me hives. I do not enjoy writing back story, it gives me boils. So, here I am, slapping my hives and scratching my boils and now he wants to bring you into this process.  And I’m too tired and itchy to fight any more. So, enjoy.

Me: ::HOWL:: ::HOWL:: ::HOWL::

Tal: You know, most Shakespearean scholars believe that was stage direction, not that the actor for Lear was suppose to say the word “howl” And please, do stop dear writer.  You know I arrived some months ago and you just ignored me. I don’t hold that against you. Really, I don’t.

Me: You’re still here? ::headdesk headdesk headdesk::

Tal: ::catches my head gently in his bandaged hands::  Don’t, please. You’ll give yourself a concussion on top of the hives and boils. Here, sit back, I’m going to make you some tea.

Me: But, you’re blind.

Tal: That doesn’t mean I can’t make tea. You know that. Or will know it as you get to know me better. Now, sit there, and don’t slam your head into anything or attempt to drink the ink in the inkwell.

Me:  ::pouting::  You’re just a figment of my imagination! And I don’t want you here! I have enough characters! ::scratches hives on my neck::

Tal: ::Gently washing the tea pot out, dexterous wrapped fingers getting slightly damp:: Well, you are the one that started thinking about real heroes, and going back through the fantastic pool that you have. You were the one that saw you didn’t have a real true hero in the bunch, that they’re all reluctant heroes and unlikely heroes. Well, of course, except for one.  But considering who he’s representing I can understand why you don’t count him as a character. And as I said, I’ve been around for a while, a month or more. You just didn’t want to see me clearly.

Me: ::vicious scratching of hives:: I don’t need another character! I don’t want you here! I don’t want a white-hat hero!

Tal: ::putting tea pot onto the burner and turning on the element:: Now stop that right now, they’ll bleed and get infected. Here ::crosses over to table and pulls out a vial of dark minty-smelling salve. :: Sit still, and don’t fight me on this or it will just be messier and take longer.

Me: WHIMPER

Tal: Don’t be a baby ::gently applies the balm with deft strokes:: Look, first of all, you have to want me here on some level, Scribe, because we’re having this conversation. I can’t exist without your say-so. Secondly, I’m more of a white turban ::grins:: than a white hat.  And third, I am the third to your  to your party of adventurers. I’m the Sage character. While I am younger than most, being blinded by my parents so that I might be an oracle for the sand demons to see through, gives me a level of maturity and compassion your other heroes lack. I make for the third side of things. Threes are good in art and in books as well as plot. I’m also blond. You like blonds. ::He moves back to the stove, his bandaged face and bandaged hands along with baggy trousers and oddly tattooed arms and chest looking very out of place in the kitchen.::

Me: I do not! I don’t have any blond characters!

Tal: Then it’s time that you did. Now the water is boiling. You have a choice between Rooibos and Earl Gray Which do you want?

Me: I want you to go away!

Tal:  :: rummages  around in the cabinet taking out the tea containers, and then turns his head over his shoulder, pointing his face in my general direction.::I’m sorry, you’re out of that. Rooibos, or Earl Gray?

Me: Earl Gray ::whimper::

Tal: None of that now. None of that, dear Scribe. Here. ::spoons out the right amount of tea leaves into the infuser and then pours the steaming water over the dark pungent basket:: I mean to be friends with you. I came out of  your own brilliant mind, and am part of you. It won’t be as dire as you’re thinking, getting to know me. ::carries over steeping tea::

Me: There are two cups!

Tal: I didn’t think that you’d mind. I’m rather parched.

Me: I suppose not. I mean you did make me one after all, and gave me the stuff for the hives. ::removes infuser and sets aside::

Tal: Sharing tea is an act of friendship in many cultures, including my own. So, with your permission dear Scribe, I say we drink to friendship.

Me: ::resigned sigh:: To friendship. ::sip::


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Comments
  1. Kaleb says:

    Tal, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

    Nothing wrong with white hat heroes, because they’re still people. They still struggle. In the end, they just chose rightly.

  2. Gee says:

    I use a similar approach in my composition classes, encouraging students to adopt a dialogic appraoch to developing arguments (or the bare bones of arguments, at least):

    Beth and Ralph are seated in a coffee shop booth, having mint juleps (or coffee).

    Beth: My house is haunted! (MAKES CLAIM)

    Ralph: What makes you say that? (ASKS FOR EVIDENCE)

    Beth: Sometimes, when only I am home, I hear voices in the house. (PROVIDES EVIDENCE; THIS WOULD BE THE FIRST POINT IN THE ESSAY’S THESIS)

    Ralph: Maybe you only imagine hearing them. (PRESENTS COUNTERARGUMENT)

    Beth: No, my dog Terror reacts to them: His fur stands on end along his spine and he growls. (REFUTES COUNTERARGUMENT)

    Ralph: Maybe the voices are those of passersby outside and only sound as if they are in the house. Your place could have weird acoustics. (PRESENTS ANOTHER COUNTERARGUMENT)

    Beth: Maybe. (CONCEDES THE POINT) But there’s something else: sometimes, I find things in places other than those in which I left them–keys, a comb, a coffee cup. The ghosts are moving them. (PROVIDES MORE EVIDENCE; THIS WOULD BE THE SECOND POINT IN THE ESSAY’S THESIS)

    Ralph: That’s easily explained. You moved them yourself and forgot having done so, (PRESENTS COUNTERARGUMENT)

    Etc.

    Your apprach looks as if it also has good results in helping you to fashion new characters. (It looks like a fun approach, too.)

    • That is far too cool. I’m going to start doing that with dialogue when I’m stuck or even as an exercise! I can see why you do that with your students, I can see all ready how it helps build logical dialogue muscles. 😀 Thanks for sharing

  3. Galadriel says:

    I have characters first, not plot.

Be brilliant, be peculiar, be peculiarly brilliant.

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