The Christmas season is one of giving, and as I look at the commercialization of the season, I wonder what happened to true generosity, giving, from the heart not just for show. I've written some posts for this blog concerning writing tips, but now I want to address the mystery of giving.
What causes some people to be "givers" and "takers"? Yes, mysteries come in all kinds of disguises, including personalities and character. When we write, we need to take much into consideration as we develop our characters. One character trait that makes characters believable is generosity.
If we look into the depths of our characters, we need to discover if he or she is a giver or a taker. Aren't most antagonists takers? They take lives, property, reputations -- whatever belongs to another person. However, to make the villains more than caricatures, we need to find a way for them to also be givers. Perhaps one murder loves a younger brother and "gives" him money, a home, an education, and/or attention.
In my novel Midnight Hours, the villain's twisted love resulted in some evil behavior, but in Midnight's own way, she "gave" to others. If I explained, I'd give away the plot. However, I know we can all find examples of antagonists giving to someone he or she loves.
Giving is almost always found in the "good guys." But, couldn't we make them more "human" if they sometimes are a bit selfish?
People are complex, and so should our characters be.
Merry Christmas Happy Holidays
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