Woldview Is Everything   8 comments

Whose perspective do you like to write from best, the hero (protagonist) or the villain (antagonist)? Why?

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How You See the World

A worldview is the fundamental cognitive orientation of an individual encompassing the whole of the individual’s knowledge and point of view. Worldviews are often taken to operate at a conscious level, directly accessible to articulation and discussion.

It affects our approach to live as a disposition toward certain types of thinking or way of viewing the world. An attitude is an approach to life influenced by our disposition towards certain types of thinking. So for example, Shane’s worldview includes an extreme realism. Shane doesn’t care if the glass half-empty or half-full. He only cares if it is real. Cai sees the world as an essentially optimistic place. These are their attitudes toward life. But worldview can also arise from political, economic, philosophical, or religious beliefs about the world. Jacob Delaney’s worldview included a strong feeling that he couldn’t boss other people around. That was an end result of a set of values he’d developed over a long life. As a Biblical Christian, Jacob believed faith is a voluntary association with his Savior that needed to be worked out as an individual, but also had implications for how he interacted in his community and the larger world. The end result was his firm conviction that he could speak to people about faith and religion, but that he couldn’t boss other people around.

Protagonist or Antagonist?

I prefer to write from the protagonist point of view because I typically share the worldview of the protagonist. It’s easier to write a character you agree with. But I have a whole range of characters who share elements of a similar worldview and they’re not all the same, so while it is easier to write from that broad perspective, each character requires a mind-shift to truly inhabit the role of that character. Jacob’s worldview differed from Rob’s which differs from Shane’s which differs from Cai’s. Jacob took an extreme view on free will for example. Rob’s view is a bit more nuanced and I like to include his occasional struggles with the Non-Aggression Principle — for example, when he chose to drug Shane rather than let him make a truly stupid mistake. Shane philosophically agrees with his grandfather on free will … for himself, but his career thus far has brought his free will into conflict with others’ free will. And Cai admits he’s judgmental and bossy and needs to relax his grip on other people.

Antagonists are Fun!

Although I prefer to write from the protagonist viewpoint, I sometimes enjoy writing from the antagonist’s point of view. It’s how I developed Gregyn in Daermad Cycle. He was a “bad guy”, but I needed his perspective, so I wrote it and I found this complex character who is worth writing. As I turn toward finishing Fount of Wraiths, I’m still exploring what his overall role in the series will be. I know he won’t ever be a thorough-going good or bad guy, but I’m still waiting to see if he will fall to one side of the line or the other.

Posted March 22, 2021 by aurorawatcherak in Uncategorized

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8 responses to “Woldview Is Everything

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  1. I do like to write a character who progresses from good to bad, and maybe back again. An imperfect creation that can have you caring about them, whatever their motivation or side of the coin they truly represent.

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    • I used to not think I could do that, but then I read Alex Finn’s Breathing Underwater. The main character Nick is a bad guy initially, but you find out why and then you watch him slowly transform to where you still aren’t sure you want him to date your daughter, but you see there is redemption possible.

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  2. Or maybe Gregyn will always remain chaotic, choosing whichever side benefits him most at the moment.

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  3. We do have to do mindshifts! It’s fun, but sometimes if I’m shifting from the character who is mad at the other character to the character the first was mad at, I have to take a break so I can come in without leftover feelings from the first.

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  4. I get to write from everyone’s point of view, as I prefer writing that way. It’s amazing how people’s viewpoints can differ regarding just one ordinary situation.

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