Tag Archives: run-of-the-mill generic plot

50k of Mary-Stu.. Why not?

PenFireSmall“Maybe I should do the opposite… try to write purple prose, Mary Sues and revive my “darlings”…” (From Ketutar Writing)

It’s all about the Inner Critic, isn’t it? In the end we have to like our characters, even those who are not likable – I don’t mean that we have to like them when they are unlikable, I mean that we have to like that they are unlikable.

Somehow we have to accept that in fictional writing any character is exactly that – fictional, a product of fantasy – so it’s really silly to try and make them too perfectly ‘non-Mary-Stuish’. So a character is inordinately beautiful or extraordinarily intelligent – there are people like that in the real world, so why shouldn’t there be such people in a fictional world?

Besides, NaNoWriMo is about writing 50k words, not about writing prose that is so dry the ink would fall off the pages if they were printed, or about ‘dehumanizing’ characters to a point where they come across as the figments of some “Mary-Stu-Grand-Inquisitor-Test-Inventors” imagination.

Unless one is exceptionally gifted at inventing original plots, some generic idea is going to insert itself in any story – even if one does a Terry Pratchett and turns the Universe on it’s head and writes satire.

So, if all you can come with is a run-of-the-mill generic plot set in a fantasy society, inhabited by elf-like, exceptionally beautiful, multi-talented and intelligent females and gorgeously sexy, multi-talented and intelligent males, and then let your hero or heroine outshine them all in various situations, described in flowery similes and over-stacked metaphors then, by all means, be consistent and write 50k words of thatEdit: After all, it worked for Good Old Uncle Tolkien, who created an entire race of Mary-Stus so why not? Really, why not?

To quote on of my characters (who frequently spouts things like this – because it is his job do so…):

“So the Order reasons that no matter how mundane the topic of a book is, the contents must be a reflection of how life is experienced by its author even if it’s beneath layers and perhaps obscure. Anyone reading any specific book will come away from that reading with a piece of that author’s life-experience, either in practice or in understanding. He or she will then in turn bring this practice or understanding into their own experience. In fact just reading the book will add to their particular life-experience. Eventually, then, as such life-experience is added to that of oneself and is shared with others through reading and writing, it will bind together Life as a whole, within all of those who share. Thus it maintains the Core of Everything, since Life is Everything.”

2 Comments

Filed under NaNoWriMo, Writing