jennygordon: (Tortoiseshell Butterfly (purple))
[personal profile] jennygordon
So, here's a poser for you.

In MoulderingBook, my MC badly wants to have killed her father. I badly want her to have killed her father.

If she did kill him, it was prior to the beginning of the story, and isn't central to the story's premise or plot — although there would obviously be a ripple-effect on her if she did. She has the motivation to do so, and it's kind of understandable that she might, given her reasons and the kind of person she is. Which is to say, she's a liar and a manipulator and an all-round charismatic stinker, but do I make her a murderer as well?

After all, this is a YA book. Albeit an upper-end YA story. As I've explained before, it's a Gothic, Poe-esque story set in a historical period that never really was, with sort-of Steampunk nuances, and Addams Family undertones. It's a fun sort of nasty, dark little romp.

I think I've worked out what I'm going to do, but I'm curious to hear your views. And it doesn't matter whether you're familiar with YA fiction or not I'm still interested.

So what do you reckon? Did she, or didn't she?

Date: 2015-02-26 08:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
i would put it in another dimension but have the reader wondering
Did she think about killing him - yes
Did she mentally kill him - yes
Does she sometimes think she killed him - yes
Does she make other people think she killed him - yes
Did she actually kill him - no

Date: 2015-02-26 10:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You're a mind reader! That's exactly the approach I have already settled on. Thanks Ivy - I'll take it as a sign that my decision is a good one :O)

It'll be interesting to see what others think ...

Date: 2015-02-26 01:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Ivy has it nailed. (She so often does.) ;)
When I skimmed first thing I thought exactly this.
Looks like your instinct is spot on.

Date: 2015-02-26 01:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Good to know - thanks.

I was really curious to see what others thought, which is why I posed the question in the way I did, rather than offering up the solution I'd come to up front.

Date: 2015-02-26 01:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
And I honestly hadn't read Ivy's response when I first read you - it was much earlier this morning. ;)

Date: 2015-02-26 02:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Even better :O)

Date: 2015-02-26 10:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Don't be afraid to have her be a killer if that's really who she is.

Have you read Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves? It's a good example of how dark you really can get if you need to. Especially if you're not writing realism.

Date: 2015-02-27 07:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh yes, I have read 'Bleeding Violet', though not for a long time. I'd forgotten how dark that gets. Thanks for the reminder. And it's good to know you think it would be okay to have my MC be a killer if that's the direction I decide I need to go with it. Mwah ha ha!


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