No Romance Weekly today, unfortunately!
Instead, have a post on something I been thinking of a lot lately 😀
The other day I watched Divergent (and my excitement had nothing at all to do with the fact Jai Courtney was in it…), and I will admit now I haven’t read the books, but what I want to talk about I can guess is part of the books.
The movie was going ok, I got the jist of the world and things and then it came to the point where Tris had to choose which faction she was going to be in for the rest of her life.
She had five choices- Abnegation (Selflessness), Erudite (Intelligence), Amity (Peaceful), Candor (Honest), and Dauntless (Brave).
She was originally in Abnegation, but she changed. Can you guess which faction she chose?
You were most likely right- it was Dauntless.
And that was great and all, and I could see it coming from a mile off, but I couldn’t help but sit there and think, ‘Why couldn’t she have been the heroine and still have been in abnegation?’
What was wrong with the character’s main trait being selflessness or kindness and not the ability to kick someone’s butt?
Is that what makes a strong character now? The ability to knock someone out? Would someone who didn’t have the ability to beat of attackers be considered weak?
Ok, Tris has different circumstances with her being divergent and all, so she is all of the traits, but the main trait that is still focused on is her bravery and fighting skills.
I understand action scenes make for more excitement, and I, myself, enjoy the fight scenes.
But if Tris had stayed in abnegation or switched to amity, would the book have been so popular?
Would a book with not only a female lead, but one whose favoured trait is something that doesn’t involve fighting, have gone down well?
I don’t know, but it certainly got me thinking.
A few books I’ve read even start off with the character having no abilities, and then they go through a training chapter, and develop these fighting skills and only then are they classed as a good, rounded character and able to continue the story.
I write fight scenes in quite a few of my books, but in my stories I enjoy having the plot resolved in some way other than violence, even if there is a big fight scene. It’s part of the reason I enjoy writing romance, because it can be the powerful connection between people that can overcome things, not necessarily the fact that my female character can right hook the bad guy into oblivion!
Still, I admit myself that I would second think making a character, especially a female one, who didn’t have the ability to defend herself for the fear of having readers think she was weak.
But to be fair, I wouldn’t have the faintest idea how to fight off an attacker, and I am not a fan of violence, yet anyone who has met me knows I certainly wouldn’t be called weak!
So, maybe it’s time to start thinking about that more? If we didn’t push the ability to kick butt as such a highly valued trait, and focused more on the nicer qualities, it might help people to see that violence isn’t always the answer and that being a nice person isn’t a weak thing?
Well, that post got a lot deeper than I meant it to 😀
Anyways, I’m not saying these awesome fighters aren’t great characters, because they’re brilliant! It was just a random thought I had 🙂
What do you think of this topic? Do you think characters could be written without the ability to fight and still be classed as a strong character?
Status of sixth manuscript: Writing first draft.
Word count: 22,940 (+6094 since last check-in).
Books read towards challenge: 2/50
Currently reading: Thyme in a Flask by Glen Quarry