1. Seraph751
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    Seraph751 If I fell down the rabbit hole...

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    Off the Path Characters & Their Backstories/Race History

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Seraph751, Jun 6, 2016.

    I am currently struggling with a character named, Xanthe. Her backstory so far is that she was captured and enslaved, but how her captor would do that is making my brain pretzelize (new word yay! lol) itself. However maybe exile would be a better fit?
    Pros and cons when it comes to exile vs. enslavement in terms of character growth or regression would be appreciated as I could use a different perspective than my own on this. So then that leads me to what other than enslavement or exile can lead to capture and containment of a person? Trials etc.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2016
  2. hawls
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    hawls Active Member

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    I don't quite understand why you are having these specific issues. It doesn't seem to me that there should be any problem with Xanthe's backstory whichever you decide.

    I do have a few things you might consider.

    The idea of every single member of a particular species being particularly skilled at one thing is a little tired. Are not all the people's of your world equally intelligent and imaginative? Do they not all share the same potential for science and the arts or whatever they would like to pursue?

    Are humans the only species in the universe with the potential to be good at anything they aspire to? This is the same problem I have with sci-fi. These are the warrior aliens, they are good at fighting. These are the logical aliens, they are good at science. These are the spiritual aliens, they are united by the one super creepy religion and every single one of them dresses the same. These are the humans. They are good at fighting and science and have a million religions. They are awesome.

    I do like this:

     
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  3. Seraph751
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    Seraph751 If I fell down the rabbit hole...

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    I wanted to figure out maybe a general job/that the clan does and use that as a means to figure the rest of their abilities within each elemental race. By no means does this limit them.
     
  4. Sapphire at Dawn
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    Sapphire at Dawn Member

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    If it's backstory, does it have to appear in the story itself? Is it really necessary to say why Xanthe is a slave? Could you just say she is and leave it at that? Is the fact she has beads really as important as the fact that she's a slave? I doubt the reader would care all that much if she has beads. Slavery is going to shaper her personality and her story far more than the beads are. Or if you really, really want them, there could be ways to explain them away. Could she have made them out of stones she found lying around, determined to give herself a bit of a defining feature? Or could her owner have given them to her to show off to others how wealthy he is? A kind of 'hey, I'm super rich, even my slaves are wearing precious stones.'

    Whether she's a slave or in exile is up to you. I think that each scenario would produce different experiences and shape the story in different ways, so it's up to you what fits your story best.

    I don't quite get your problem in problem two, I'm afraid. What do you mean by questioning?
     
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  5. Kallisto
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    Kallisto Active Member

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    Ever heard of a serf? Now, that's a hard term the define just as feudalism is hard to define as it meant different things in different time periods. But it might be something worth looking into.
     
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  6. Seraph751
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    Seraph751 If I fell down the rabbit hole...

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    The slavery is not going to be a main part, if I do decide on slavery. I was debating on exile as well. There are scenes that I wish to portray as flashbacks, those pivotal moments in a character's development. On a side note, the beads, are weapons that I am wrestling with and but for now I am setting them aside.
     
  7. Seraph751
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    Seraph751 If I fell down the rabbit hole...

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    Yes I do know the term serf, a person basically tied to the land by circumstances and under the mercy of the nobility in charge of the area. They are in the grey area between slavery and freeman.
     

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