Friday, 30 October 2015

Writing - What happens when your hero ages?

The undisputed fact of living on this earth is that time passes. We all get older. What happens then if you have earth based heroes and they age?

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Ageing superheroes

The question arises because of the advent of the latest Star Wars film 'The Force Awakens' due to be released pretty soon. People are somewhat surprised that Luke Skywalker hasn't yet appeared in any of the trailers.

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Skywalker now?

Of course it depends on how you want to handle your stories, what sort of longevity you are going to attribute to them, or will you kill them off?

I have thought long and hard about Steele and how many books with him as the lead character. Initially I decided upon 10 Steele novels but that is not to say that I will kill him off when I get to that magic number. On the other hand, even though he has developed over the 9 books written so far, he lives in 'real time' and will age. The stories have taken a slightly different line in book 8 and 9 but this doesn't mean that he is going to continue. As a writer I want to try something different.

The next project I have in mind is a historical story based upon a real event and it is with a mixture of trepidation and excitement that I approach this new departure. Of course it may not work for me and perhaps I'll need to return to Steele. Perhaps he has become a bit of a comfort blanket.

If you are intending to age your lead character you have a duty to your readers to go gently. Readers buy into the characters we create and we could lose custom or even cause upset. In the case of the Star Wars film fans have become so intrigued about Skywalker that they have started to create scenarios to justify his none appearance.

Have a careful read of the Steele novels, try and ascertain the developments that have taken place over the course of the stories and let me know if you're enjoying where he is going. 

 My hero was created post recession and so has no concept of how 'good' things were pre-2008. In 'I Have To Get It Right' when he began to flex his muscles he was working in an accountant's office. Then after the Gurentai took him under their wing and removed all of his financial worries, it was justice that was his major concern. He did become involved in international relations in 'The 51st State' but it was for the maintenance of a respectful distance between countries, rather than economic reasons. His trips into the USA had repercussions which can be read about in 'The Biter Bit' but then by the time things began to change in 2011 and the recession was really biting, Steele was trying to make sense of the state of the nation in 'A Changed Reality' and coming up against some really nasty people taking advantage of the shortage of money. By the time the USA are out of their recession Steele's steps are still being dogged by an unknown enemy from the same country. In 'Inceptus' we also find out more about what makes the man tick. The most recent Steele book 'Castled' where Steele is once again at risk from unseen enemies. It would seem that he has become quite recession proof!
The most recent addition to the Steele family is Earth plc in which our hero is concerned with political and emotional issues in this crime fighting adventure.

All books are available in paperback or ebook through Amazon, Smashwords and all good book shop websites.

This is a dystopian story that hinges directly on the state of the nation as a result of fiscal mismanagement. Having said that it is more a story of human relations, privations, love and loss.

Poetry - there are also two thoughtful collections of poetry available solely through Amazon.


God Bless