I recently completed a scene where one of my main characters engages in a duel against someone new to the story. The duel isn’t life threatening, but is still thrilling to read. There’s a bigger internal struggle that’s really being fought and this mock duel is merely a physical representation of what the character’s true battle is. I love this form of duality ― or should I say “duelity” :) ― it really brings a lot of flavor to the scene and helps him to make a life-changing decision.
A Change of Heart
I think the most compelling character arc in the first book of my epic ties into what occurs in the prologue. I actually haven’t written the prologue because I’m saving it until I finish the main story, but I know what it needs to accomplish in order to make another character’s journey worth it in the end. What will make this really pack a punch is figuring out the best wording for one singular sentence. I’m still playing with what it will say, but its phrasing is pivotal to really gripping my character by the heart and not letting go.
There’s a character that I debated back and forth if he should end up in the first book or not. I think I’ve finally settled on him falling into book one. I made this decision because this series has a lot of characters to juggle who don’t even get to meet each other during the course of any given story. This particular character becomes important for the overall epic, but I first need him to get over his old vendettas before he can truly become a hero. In order to do this, I need to confront him with a moral dilemma that will force him into a life changing crucible.
Writing What You Know
As of the day I’m writing this, I’m not complete with book one of my first epic, but I’m always looking at what’s going to be happening in the future. I often hear the sage advice to “write what you know.” It means that stories are easier to create when you write about what you’re familiar with and interested in. In book two, I have a very special character whose story is based on a true story told to me by my mother. In a way, this story is a tribute to her and all that she’s done for me. It touches on the shades of grey within an oppressive society and the grey within the hearts of those who are oppressed.
A Corrupted Heart
I’m working on figuring out how exactly I can tell the back story of one of my antagonists. I have what is called a corruption arc (similar to what happens to Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars) where he is pulled into evil’s grip by a slow, methodical breaking of an impressionable mind. I have to be careful how I do this. I need to be able to do it in a way that both adds to the arc of the book in question while also providing an interesting story in its own right.
What About You?
Do you enjoy Epic Fantasy stories in the vein of Robert Jordan, Anne McCaffrey and Brandon Sanderson?
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