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  1. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    Referring to an inhuman 'monster'

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Damage718, Jan 1, 2020.

    I'm writing a story from the MC's perspective. It's a frantic story, with a very fast buildup and climax, as he's being pursued by some monster. The story is like a race against time, of sorts, so there's a reference to the monster in just about every paragraph.

    Should I be referring to the monster strictly as 'it', or 'he/him'? Or is a combination of both ok?
     
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  2. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 Senior Member

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    It, I think. He/him implies either a human, or a closeness with the monster.
     
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  3. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    There is definitely a closeness with the MC and the monster. It's as though the monster is like the MC's personal monster in fact, like an evil guardian angel, if you will.

    Although not human, there are masculine qualities the monster shows, so saying 'he/him' would make sense...
     
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  4. EFMingo

    EFMingo A Nefarious Flamingo Staff Contributor

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    Well, mix it up a little. If we're reading the same designator over and over it will get annoying. If you're referring to it so often, maybe throw the reader bits of information on it here and there so they can fill the mental blank. Otherwise, we're left with a shadow monster chasing a character, which gives the reader little to nothing to fear or understand. By changing up the designator, you can make the monster more clear as the story goes on without directly stating, if that's your intent. Not much to go on here, so I can't help too much.
     
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  5. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    Well, you certainly read into it correctly, re: 'shadow monster chasing a character.'

    It's something of a psychological story. The MC knows there is a monster. It assaults him without warning, but at irregular intervals, and has done so for years.

    Each time the monster returns, the MC:

    - Can hear it
    - Can feel it
    - Is terrified of it
    - Just cant see it...until the very end, at least.
     
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  6. EFMingo

    EFMingo A Nefarious Flamingo Staff Contributor

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    And?...there's a hell of a lot more senses than just sight, which you mentioned. By shadow monster, I mean unknown thing we are supposed to be afraid of but lacks description. Sounds like you have description you can use. What does it feel like, smell like, maybe even it's so invasive it makes the air taste like it. Give the reader something to latch on to and discomfort us. Readers are more likely to fear for the character if they first associate with the character, and second are physically fearful in real life of aspects of the thing the character is fearing.
     
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  7. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    Oh there is description in there :) The 'chase' and suffocating dread is very real to the MC. In fact, for good between-the-lines readers, and more specifically, anxiety sufferers (hint, hint, SPOILER), this tale should resonate pretty loudly. I was just juggling the proper ratio of pronoun usage with regards to the antagonist :)
     
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  8. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Has this monster got a name? Or, if not, can your character 'name' the monster? That would solve the problem of how to refer to him/it.
     
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  9. Steve Rivers

    Steve Rivers Senior Member

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    I think all this talk about taxmen is disgusting. They're people, too, you know.
     
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  10. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    Well, in the end, the MC realizes the monster is himself. So I've re-worked it as a mix of it/he/him.
     
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  11. keysersoze

    keysersoze Active Member

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    This might be me going over the line here but I'd prefer 'it'. If there was a fourth kind of a pronoun, I'd have used that. The idea is fascinating and somewhere there in my mind too although in a very primitive state. Some 7 years ago I came across a French novel in which the lead character is a video game character and in the end it dies. For some reason unknown, your idea reminded me of that. You character must die in the end, I hope. That would seal the monstrosity of the monster. I have fought with my own monsters for so long. I hope you free something within yourself with this 21st century's Frankenstein's monster. Might I ask, who are your favourite authors in the genre?
     
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  12. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 Senior Member

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    Oh, no, they're not!
     
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  13. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    Well I don't really want the monster to die because this story is, well, rather autobiographical if you will :) It's more psychological than anything and about coming to certain realizations about dealing with one particular demon.

    Favorite authors period, in any genre, are King, Tolkien, Kinsella, Stoker, Lovecraft and Clancy.
     
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  14. keysersoze

    keysersoze Active Member

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    I meant the monster kills the character and lives on. Of course, it is your story/ So you will decide. I am generally turned off by monsters that were just not enough to kill the protagonist. Why slander the name 'monster' if he cannot even kill one guy and all he does is scare, like a scarecrow?
     
  15. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    It's a monster only from the MC's perspective. Like I said in an earlier post, it's like an evil guardian angel, so to speak. It's the MC's personal demon. The MC doesn't realize the monster is really himself (yet), so he tries to personify it by calling it a 'monster' so that he can fight back against it. It's not meant to slander. If any real monsters are offended by this, I apologize ;)
     
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