1. Drekey
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    Drekey New Member

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    I'm about to kill my MC, by accident

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Drekey, Jul 27, 2011.

    Hello, first time poster by the way.

    I'm writing my first book right now. Written a few short stories earlier but always knew I was not ready for a full novel.

    Now I'm going for the novel.

    Problem is, I'm writing (yet another) high-fantasy story and I'm about 25% in the story now. But during a daring escape, one of my MC during a fight suffered a deadly blow.

    I feel I cannot lie to the reader just saying things like "And the huge animal they where fighting didn't really claw at him in a deadly burst, just poked him. Really hard. But he is ok now" or something like "He's back and legs were full of profound cuts but «MAGICKLY» he´s ok now"

    The problem gets even worst if I confide to you that I think the damn MC is rather boring, he would still have a lot of development to do along the rest of the story but right now, he is undeniably dull.

    He is part of a duo, he's not alone, and I have other character who I've been caring for as an MC, who can easily go on the rest of the story by himself. But the guy who's dying is a HUGE part of everything I had design before in my plot.

    Again, I did not want to kill him, the huge big dog did, and logic and honestly forbids me of saying he didn't.

    What should I do?

    Thanks in advance for any input

    by the way, if you're wondering why my english sounds "weird" its because I'm portuguese and never lived in any english talking country.
     
  2. suddenly BANSHEES
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    suddenly BANSHEES Contributing Member

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    You can make him an amputee. I imagine it'd be harder to adventure through a high fantasy world with one of your limbs missing, so it could add more conflict to your story. I'd recommend going for one of the legs, personally, because peg-legs are hella cool.

    Also, your English is really good. I didn't know until your last sentence that it wasn't your native language :)
     
  3. Drekey
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    Drekey New Member

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    Oh god I can totally reap out one of his arms! :D

    Thanks!
     
  4. Blue_Lotus
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    Blue_Lotus Senior Member

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    Your English is better than mine and I grew up in America... ;)
    As for killing your MC off, well is yours a world where magic is real? If so you could have him saved by a wizard, or a person skilled in the arts of the craft. If not perhaps a really good hospital and a bit of luck? OR if he really is as dull as you say he is maybe he is better off dead? He could always come back to haunt the rest of the gang later if needed...
     
  5. roseberryse
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    roseberryse Member

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    I say kill him. If he's boring you, he's probably boring everyone else, too. It will make for a nice surprise for the reader and it doesn't seem like you'll have much to do in the way of finding another character to take his place. Sometimes deviating from your plan is exactly what you need to bring your story back to life.
     
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  6. Drekey
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    Drekey New Member

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    Nice answer. Thanks, i'm trully gona consider that point.
     
  7. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    If he's boring you, I agree that's a big problem.

    Not to point out the obvious, though...the big dog has no independent existence. He's a fictional creation that does not think. You can go back and rewrite that scene in a manner that make it logical to keep the character alive if you so desire.
     
  8. SeverinR
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    SeverinR Contributing Member

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    In real life nothing is certain,
    in fantasy everything is possible if you make it reasonable.

    We have race car drivers walking away from crashes over 200mph(over 300Kph).
    People fall 7 storys(possibly into the basement, but thats another story:p)out of a building and live.
    People hit by speeding cars.
    People being shot multiple times and survive.

    In real life strange things happen and people live.

    In fantasy, a critical hit can be survived. Getting a blast of dragon's breath,
    a shower of arrows.

    The one thing that a character cannot survive is terminal boredom. Better to let the dull character die, then kill the story.

    If the monster can't slap some life into him, then let it put an end to his miserable boring existence.:cool: Maybe it will scare:eek: the other main characters into something exciting.
     
  9. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Drekey,

    I'll come at this from another angle: Just as the actions of a character in a story should advance the plot or move the story forward in some way--adding to it, the death of a character should do the same.

    If you don't know where the story is going, will many more 'oops/accident' situations paint you into a prose corner before you reach the end?

    Good luck moving forward.

    Terry
     
  10. Drekey
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    Drekey New Member

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    TWErvin2,

    I do have an idea where the story is going, but I came to this halt because I didn't thought the Big Bad Dog would be that strong compared to my characters.

    Its really a problem of miss risk calculation. I presented them with an obstacle that MUST be there for it to make sense, and they end up fighting it to the top of their skill, which is very very low right now.

    I agree that this kind of risk taking will be hazardous for my story until the end. Thanks for the input.

    Steerpike,

    I know, but as my characters, I try to keep my animals plausible and true to themselves. If you're strapped on to the Big Bad Dog's neck, why wouldn't the Big Bad Dog scratch you out like a flee or a funnel collar?

    So, of course I can make him do something different, but then again, maybe he deserves to die for even trying such a thing.

    I'll consider it of course, but Fantasy have a problem of credibility with the adult readers, and I wanted to keep that problem to a minimum.

    SeverinR,

    You are on to something. He can obviously survive the vicious attack. That was the idea I was going with from the start, but then he's life's worth came into play. And here I am.



    Thank you all for your input, you're all helping a lot. I have a lot to think about.
     
  11. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Drekey - true, but what I meant is you have full control over everything. If being strapped to the dog's neck inevitably leads to death, then you don't strap the character to the dog's neck, etc. It's just a matter of how much you're willing to change to make it plausible to keep the character alive.
     
  12. Drekey
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    Drekey New Member

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    Steerpike,

    Point taken, I can obviously pull that off.
     
  13. Vampire Muffin
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    Vampire Muffin New Member

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    You could have him go into a comma or something and then wake up with an alternate personality then you could keep your character and lose his boring side.
     
  14. Quezacotl
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    Quezacotl Contributing Member

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    This is a high fantasy story, so write your own rules on what people can and cannot survive.

    Or just go back and edit it.
     
  15. livingforfun
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    livingforfun New Member

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    Let him die than resurrect him somehow. Supernatural does it all the time and it works for them.
     
  16. Flyingfishphilosopy
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    Flyingfishphilosopy New Member

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    Let him live... Kill the dog instead!
     
  17. Mifio
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    Mifio Member

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    I love that show.
    Oh.
    *ahem*
    I'd honestly vote to kill him off and rework what you have written for the story. If a character is boring you, he'll be boring to everyone else. Plus, it'll truly devastate the other main character, it'll give him some drama to work through, some pain to handle, and really flesh him out. For instance, will he take the death of his partner hard? Go on a drinking binge? Will he keep it all in and become a cold, malicious character, almost evil in some respects? There's so much you can do with such a simple thing as death. Go nuts.

    Kill 'em all!
     
  18. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    I have a couple of characters in my own novel who get attacked by big wolflike creatures and get serious wounds.

    They don't HAVE to die. They could just get mauled and then recover.

    I'll admit, I do like Lotus's idea of his ghost coming back to haunt the gang. ;)

    But yeah, the MC being boring is a much more serious problem.
     
  19. AltonReed
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    AltonReed Active Member

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    Dw, happens to me all the time.

    'And then John Doe's head fell off and he died.' Then I just shout 'OOPS! Not again!' :p
     
  20. FeatherPenWriter
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    FeatherPenWriter Member

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    I'd say, you could make him come back as a differant character, something like an animal or make him come back as a ghost. hehe.
     
  21. Hawwyboo
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    Hawwyboo Member

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    Why not just have somebody rescue the character? Putting the main character in mortal peril is surely a perfect opportunity to introduce someone previously unconnected to the story, who can then become a major character (or they can be an intriguing one-off, like Tom Bombadil).

    Or, seeing as this is fantasy, you could give the dog the ability to empathise with the main character. Perhaps he could negotiate with it, and then they could become companions or the main character could do an errand in return for his life (and the errand could turn out to be even more perilous, 'out of the frying pan and into the fire').
     

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