Kill your heroes (or at least make them work hard for their reward)

Never let your fear decide your fate.

Every hero you write should have to kill their own heroes – literally or figuratively, dealer’s choice.  The burden of the expectations of the hero’s mentors, parents, social class, or heroes can stifle the character and leave them unable to live up to the task at hand.

When you are telling a story, it’s not about being nice and safe. Some of my favorite stories are the unsanitized versions of the Brothers Grimm. Things don’t always turn out well, every story point is contingent on the actions of the characters. A great example is the sister in the Seven Ravens. She’s locked in a tower and the only way to free her brothers is to use the bone of her pinkie because she lost the chicken bone. Action > consequence.

Don’t let your story get hijacked by fear. Use fear to define your story and make your characters memorable.  Remember the immortal words of William Faulkner, “In writing, you must kill all your darlings.”

The characters  you create need to either soar or fail, to do otherwise is unfair to the story and/or the reader. No one gets a free ride in life or your story. If the character isn’t pulling their weight – nuke their behinds!


Moment of shameless self-promotion. #ebookweek

The e-copy of Hot Flashes will be 50% (was $3.99 now $1.99) off Sunday, March 2nd through Saturday, March 8th.

Hot Flashes2

Click on the book cover for reviews.

Amazon Kindle &
Smashwords (.epub, .rtf, .lrf, .pdb, .txt formats)

And don’t forget to tell a friend!



  • Reblogged this on Leila Gaskin – author and commented:

    This is my letter ‘K’ for the #atozchallenge. It’s a re-post from March, but it suits my mood. Enjoy!

  • Great post. It’s along the lines of some of the things that have been going through my mind of late.

    • Thanks Kathi! I play the song when I’m frustrated and it helps me to remember the ‘why’ of my writing. Btw, loving emergence. When I finish, there will be a review. 🙂

      • Thanks, Leila. I’ve got Hot Flashes on the top of my TBR list — anxious to see what you did with it after the very early peek I had. Unfortunately, I haven’t read anything lately. That seems to be the first thing that suffers when I run low on time.

        • Amen. Time is always on short supply. 🙂 If I find those annoying time bandits, I’ll make sure they share.

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