Part 14 of Wine and Die now online!
Only a few more left to go, then a break.
This tale has brought up some personal questions about character sympathy – what intentions I had and whether those intentions were wrong. Not just wrong, but fallen for a trap I oh so loathe in pilots – the Forced Introduction, where you take your protagonist and insert them firmly in the audiences face after the story has began moving.
The Forced Introduction has pros and cons. To some extent it does help give the reader a small sea of uncertainty as to where this story is going; rather than just plonking the queen chess piece right in front of them and saying “here be the queen”, you force the reader to examine some of the less vital story pieces and perhaps consider their roles before bringing in the big guns. It also allows for perhaps some surprise and a way to up-a-gear in the story telling.
It is however, commonly used when dealing with “larger than life” characters, which retrospectively, I wonder whether it would have been more fun to introduce Fox in a more downbeat subtle fashion before really drawing the reader to the fact she is indeed, currently, the “queen” of the piece.
I say “currently” quite particularly. I wanted to create a city that had potential for all sorts of characters – while the colloquial name of the city is named after this character, there is no need for this character to be the be all and end all of the project. And like a TV show, if I feel she’s done all she can do, or it becomes clear that other’s feel she’s not something they enjoy, she can be retired as quickly as Commander Sinclair in Babylon 5.
Fiction, above all, has to be fluid, does it not?