1. isaac223
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    isaac223 Member

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    Quasi-Realistic Yet Useful Teenage Main Protagonists?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by isaac223, Sep 5, 2016.

    Well, I try to read as much as possible, and though the only young POV character (of 3) in my current favorite novel, Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin, is a very young "Orogene", I find that I prefer teenage protagonists, as apposed to, say, fully-aged protagonists. That being said, I'm not seeking to write a YA Fiction Novel (people seem to so commonly be predisposed to not want to read YA Fiction), but it seems like in most cases (not all, but most), teenage protagonists are typically in YA Fiction. I'm attempting to write a high-fantasy novel (with the main protagonist actually being relatively powerless compared to some other characters), but even if Ernis(the protagonist) doesn't have the same "overwhelmingly powerful abilities," as they would be from his perspective, that some other characters like Maurel and Wilhelmina have, I'd like him to be realistically useful in situations involving combat somehow. How would I go about writing my novel in such a manner?
     
  2. hawls
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    hawls Active Member

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    It doesn't surprise that you resonate more with a teenage protagonist. But that's an unhelpful comment.

    In terms of making your less than extraordinary character useful in combat, perhaps he has a mind for tactics and strategy. While everyone else is out there swinging swords all willy nilly, he's there assessing the battlefield, observing everyone's strengths and subtle weaknesses. He can read people, get under their skin, make them screw up and leave themselves vulnerable to counter-attacks. He comes up with brilliant ideas that the others can pull off.
     
  3. isaac223
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    isaac223 Member

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    I apologize. I just wished to explain why I'd rather write a protagonist who is, in fact, a teenager.

    I did consider this, and if nothing else shows itself, I will definitely use this. but though I did consider it, I felt like the most common strengths you see in terms of combat-useful abilities comes in the form of the ability to fight with a weapon, bare hands/feet, or some form of supernatural trait, the ability to be stealthy/agile/quick and the ability to mentally gauge a situation and react accordingly (what you said, and I'd consider having leadership skills fall under this category).

    Perhaps the range of different types of books I've read is so minimal I don't see many others, but those do indeed to seem to be the most common to me. You can say I may be trying too hard to be different, but I am attempting (and having issues) thinking of a more atypical way in which the MC could be useful. Though, by all means, if I can't think of anything else, what you suggested is what I was going to go with.
     
  4. hawls
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    hawls Active Member

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    Gosh, no! I meant my comment was unhelpful! I was being a smartass.

    You don't need to read to encounter more of the same ideas. They are in visual media as well.

    Maybe provide an example of what might happen on the battlefield and where you would like this character to be placed. Then you can see what might be really useful in that particular situation and work from there.
     
  5. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    I've often wondered how possible it would be to sneak about in a medieval melee. A teenager, being slighter of build, might be able to avoid the big guys who are focused on smacking the crap out of each other mano a mano and assist his/her side with a dagger in the back, or a well-timed trip of an enemy warrior. Not the most glorious of victories, but it could be useful to their side.
     
  6. Iain Aschendale
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    Iain Aschendale Contributed Member Contributor

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    -double post again-
     

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