Heroes of Olympus: Writing Female Characters

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Viria is amazing. All the images are credited to her.

Okay, here we go. Spoilers ahead.

I’m not a fan of the Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan. Honestly, I’m not fully sure why. I had issues with how it expanded the world (for the same reasons as in The Kane Chronicles), how it tied up (or dropped) most of its plotlines, and the lack of lasting consequences (especially with character deaths). Or maybe I was just too old when I read it. But the main issue I’ll address is the female characters. Yep, this is the ‘strong female character’ post every blog needs.

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Update on Writeousness and My State of Affairs

Hello! I think it’s time for an update.

So: School. I have a really busy semester, and it’s getting hard to post every week. I can do it, but I think it’s more effort than it’s worth at this point.

This is compounded by the fact that Writeousness has shifted to this:

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He’s been watching a lot of Star Wars

In other words, I really wanna work on my book, which is going great, by the way. I made two giant steps forward:

1. I realized I didn’t have a plot.

2. I got a plot.

So I’m excited.

I’ll still be posting here, but I’m not committing to once a week. Just so you all know. Have a great season/semester/whatever’s relevant!

Personal Responsibility and Jessica Jones, Season 1

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This post will be less of a lesson and more of a reflection or analysis. Contains spoilers.

Jessica Jones wins the prize for the most thematically focused tv show I’ve ever seen. Throw in movies, and it’s near the top. Hey, add books to the mix, and this superhero Netflix show is still in the running.

You wouldn’t expect that if you knew what Jessica was like. She’s hard-drinking, bad-tempered, and terribly selfish at times. But above all else, Jessica Jones emphasizes personal responsibility.

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Ender’s Game: Your Audience as the Problem

enders-gameEnder’s Game, by Orson Scott Card, is one of the best books I’ve read, and I don’t say that lightly. Both the story and the characters are compelling, and even though it’s a prime example of genre fiction it still has several strong themes.

One of the biggest things that stood out to me was the twist at the end. It changed my whole expectation of the world and the morality the author was operating under, and it explained a theme that had been building, unnoticed, through the book.

(Spoilers ahead)

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The Name of the Wind: How to Handle Mary-Sue Characters

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The Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss, is a wonderful book. The writing is beautiful, the story sucks you in like a movie does, and the characters are engaging and loveable- especially Kvothe.

It’s good that Kvothe is loveable, being the main character and all, but I was actually surprised by how much I liked him. He’s the ‘more clever and skilled than everyone’ character that can so easily be flat and boring. His ‘flaws’ are a fiery temper- which is often a praised character trait- and pride, which is well-founded due to his talent. To top it all, his eyes change color based on his mood. In short: Kvothe is a Mary-Sue.

But despite the general hatred for Mary-Sues, it works.

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What I’ve Learned From a Year of Blogging

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So last Sunday marked my one year anniversary of blogging! I had the brilliant idea to start a blog right before my first semester of college, but (to my surprise) I’ve managed to stick with it. It’s been way more fun than I was expecting, which always helps.

Although I’m by no means an expert blogger, I have picked up some tricks that have helped me in the past year. Here are some of the things I’ve learned in a year of blogging.

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Spiderman Homecoming: Staying Self-Aware

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I have an irrational fondness for the Toby Maguire Spiderman trilogy. After all, Spiderman 3 was the first superhero movie I watched. It holds a special place in my heart. I forgive its flaws (you know what I’m talking about). But despite my loyalty, I have to say that Homecoming is my favorite Spiderman movie.

There’s so much I love about it. I love Tony Stark as the mentor, I love all the supporting characters (I mean ALL), and I love how young Peter is. But from a technical standpoint, one thing in particular stands out. Homecoming is delightfully self-aware, without taking you out of the world.

(Spoilers ahead)

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Hacksaw Ridge: Violence in Media

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There’s always a lot of talk of violence in media, media like movies or videogames or even books. In general, people caution against viewing violence in entertainment because it can desensitize you to violence in real life.

I completely agree that we should be careful about what we watch or read. If I didn’t believe that media could influence people, why would I bother spending so much time writing?

The assumption that goes along with these views, though, is that less violence and gore makes a movie less desensitizing and therefore healthier. But sometimes, less violence can be more desensitizing, and it took an extremely brutal movie for me to realize that.

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