The Helpless Hero or Heroine…

Magazine cover
Magazine cover (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Just a quick note about
more changes to my blog. Since I made the last ones in January as I mentioned
then, I was going to do some thinking on the state of things here. I love
blogging, I do but I’ve come to realize it subtracts from the time I have for
my stories and that’s not good. So, I’m going to cut back to blogging once a
week on Tuesdays and try to do topics that may interest readers as well as
writers. Most of the focus will still be on horror, so I hope that you’ll stop
in. It has been such a wonderful experience getting to know you all. I just
feel if I want to become a published writer, I need to concentrate on getting
my work out there.


The Clueless Hero or Heroine

Traci Kenworth


How many of you dislike the hapless hero or heroine
in horror stories? I know the clichés have been turned inside out many times
with different films but personally, I like my characters to have a bit more
smarts. Isn’t that what it takes to defeat evil, after all? Oh, yes, courage is
a definite plus when it comes to things that go bump in the night, but the
survivor/s usually have to figure out a way to get out of whatever they’ve
dropped into, unless it’s, of course, a changed world where they have to
recognize a path to take that will either save or end them. Every corner has
its openings, we just have to look for them and sometimes risk all.

Granted, not everyone is a fighter. There are just
those who will not defend themselves. Often, another character will fight for
them and try to keep them alive. I like to think, eventually that person will
see that they’re worth defending and begin the change necessary to make it in
the new world/situation at hand. Maybe, over the course of the tale, they’ll
even become heroic themselves. Most horror has characters that often don’t
really change at all. I find this boring and sad. Each of us would react to
things in a different way. Some who may have been lost in life, might find a
purpose. Others, will rocket toward destruction. These different types are what
make life up and exploring them is what I like to focus on in my own work: the
overcomer. Rather than fleeing from terror, they reach a point where they make
a stand. Because they have to, if only to go on.

So, for you readers out there, what do you
like/dislike about the characters in horror stories/films/etc.? What type of
personalities would you like to see more of?

And writers: do you strive to make your characters
stand out? “Breathe” on the pages? Or do you settle for the usual horror

2 thoughts on “The Helpless Hero or Heroine…

  1. I know what you mean, Stina!! I don’t watch much contemporary horror either, I prefer books or short stories. Although The Walking Dead is an exception lately. I jut started watching it a few months ago during the marathon they were running. I had previously watched part of the pilot but it was too graphic for me. I know that might sound funny, me being a horror writer but I’m more of the quiet horror than in-your-face. i agree as far as the YA character versus the more adult versions in fiction. On screen, I think they need to have a revolution as well.


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