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  • Kate Forest

Hero Worship

Writers spend a lot of time talking about heroes and heroines. Finding the right balance between interesting/believable/heroic/likable/relatable is a particular struggle of mine.

I’m drawn to the flawed character. The one that’s painful to read about. If you’ve seen the move “Young Adult” with Charlize Theron, you know the character I’m describing. Theron’s character is an author who was never kind to her “friends” in high school. Now a 37-year-old divorced alcoholic, she returns to her home town to break up the marriage of her high school boyfriend and win him back. Her goal is despicable. She is despicable. And just when you think she’s grown, she hasn’t. And I adore her.

See this movie because Patton Oswalt is in it also:

I’m also the only person I know who left the theater after the George Clooney movie “Up in the Air” with a smile on my face.

The anti-hero is the man for me.

The characters in my books, tend toward anti-hero. I need to be vigilant that they don’t stray too far from the actual hero part of that description. Complex people are so much more fun to write about. It can be hard to relate to them, maybe because we recognize our own failings. We all have a dark side we try to hide. But if we can honor it, take it out and examine it, maybe we stand a chance to do battle against it when we need to don our capes and be heroic.

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