Before I start this post, I what everyone to know that I will be dealing with a character who is suicidal, selfharming, and abusing alcohol. This is a warning for all of you. So I have been facing a big change in my novel Winter Blossoms. When I first started Rowen was just the name of one of the younger brothers of Joren the male MC. The character was only mentioned in a few scenes, mostly in refrains to his relationship with Anders (the older half brother of Cressida, the female MC). The only other time Rowen came up, was when he was killed, as I was using his death as a major turning point for the characters. But what I now realize is that if Rowen's death is to have the planed effect; then the reader would need to come to know him as a person. This is where I hit a wall. Because having Rowen as a mentioned character, was far easier than Rowen as a character in the story. Most of this problem is because of Rowen's mental state at the time Winter Blossoms takes place. I guess what I am trying to say is: mentioning a suicidal, depressed character like Rowen, was a lot easier then writing him as a character. Rowen is the third child, and third son of Lord Charles of RosePool. Rowen is pretty much the star of his family, he is a great knight, vary handsome and a bit of a reckless. He was raised by Lord Nicolas of StormMountain as a favor for his father. When he was 13, it was arranged that Rowen would become the square of Anders of StoneWall, the heir of Lord Lucius of StoneWall. It was love at first sight, at least on Rowen's part. Rowen spent the rest 2 and a half years hopelessly in love with his knight master. Somewhere along the way, Anders fell in love with Rowen. It would take an assassination attempt, a knife, a lot of blood (most of it being Rowen's) and Rowen almost dying to get the two to say they where in love. After that, Rowen and Anders where inseparable. Ok, so finely getting to the point of this post... Anders is killed in battle by his own brother, shortly before Winter Blossoms starts. His death plunges Rowen (who at this point is 17) into a deep depression. Unable to cope with both the death of his lover, as well as watching and being order to physically abuse Anders younger sister (Cressida), pushes Rowen even father. He attempts to cope by starting to drink heavily, and to an even dangers level. After Cressida is sent to RosePool, and marries Rowen's brother Joren, is with things get really bad. With Cressida out of danger and marred to someone Rowen knows will protect her, Rowen himself no longer has any reason to live. Suicide had crossed Rowen's mind before, but with Cressida's need for a friend and protester, and his duty to her as Anders young sister. Rowen had felt the need to hang on until Cressida was safe. With Cressida now safe in RosePool, Rowen sees no point in continuing to live. This leads to Rowen attempting to commit suicide. He is unsuccessful, because of the timely arrival of his sister Margaret. Unfortunately Rowen's parents don't take it well, they are also vary unhelpful and in no way understand what Rowan is going through. They end up sending Rowen back home to RosePool, and it is at this point that we as readers first meet him. Two things that are important: one, this is high fantasy, the would is simpler to that Tortall in Tamora Pierce's books. The second is that at the time Rowen first appearance, his is still showing clear signs of his suicide attempt. (I am not going to post what I am referring to here, if you want or need to know please send me a message.) I guess the question I am trying to ask is: how do I handed writing Rowen as a character, without making it so dark no one will read it? (I am asking how you would handle this, as well as what you think of the hole idea) The only thing I have left to add is that Rowen is ment to represent, the coast of war, that is the pain, sorrow, hopeless and anger war or battle leaves behind.