Last week, I introduced the idea that often, “good guys” can come across as boring. I’m not sure if this tendency is a deficiency in the way they are written (i.e., the author’s understanding of what constitutes “goodness” is shallow) or a deficiency in the way we perceive them (as in: being in mental turmoil/moral […]Read More Making Good Look Good: Top 5 Non-Boring Good Guys
Stephen Koch writes the following about Lucie Manette, the ideal woman in Tale of Two Cities: “She is a flawless paragon of sweetness and love, and the way we know it is true sweetness, true love, is that both are defined by the absolute absence of any conflicting impulse whatsoever. In two plain words, she […]Read More Are “Good Guys” Boring?
I recently read Ursula K. Le Guin’s magisterial The Tombs of Atuan. This slow, relatively simple story details the life of a young priestess, Arha, and how a wizard thief comes into her domain, changes her outlook, and helps her escape. There’s not much of a plot to be spoiled—everything I just said is straight […]Read More Resurrecting Tenar: Easter in Earthsea
Last week, I posted an analysis of Hester Shaw’s character arc in the tragically underrated film, Mortal Engines. I conceived this post on an analytical high and wrote it in a fervor. And, perhaps due in part to our country’s tragic lack of interest in the film,… got very few hits on it. At the […]Read More Moral Engines, or, Shannon Won’t Shut Up About Mortal Engines
When Mortal Engines came out last year, I viewed several trailers and shrugged. Last week rolled around, and I was in the mood for some mindless movie-watching while folding our backed-up laundry piles. So we Redboxed it. I loved it from the first. I could tell Cap loved it, too, by the way he knelt, ready […]Read More I Loved Mortal Engines and I Don’t Care Who Knows It
I ran into the following quote in the probably-well-intentioned-but-extremely-problematic book What the Bible Says about Child Training: It is interesting that even with all of the women’s liberation and “politically correct” attack against traditional male and female roles, and although the majority of the boys in this survey expected their wives to work, they still […]Read More Captain Marvel, Disney Princesses, and Idolatry of the Past
My Brit Lit class and I had a GREAT discussion on Pride and Prejudice today, and I mean great. Among the questions we discussed was one that I posed to satisfy my curiosity: what makes Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet so compelling, so attractive, so likable? After the one guy in class clarified that we […]Read More Pride, Prejudice, and the Hard Truth
My first shelved novel had some issues (hence: shelved). It was complete, it had been through seven (eight, maybe?) drafts, sentences had been lovingly crafted and tweaked. My beta readers all agreed that “once you got into it,” it was a good read. I wrote about how to know you have the wrong protagonist in […]Read More How to Create a Bad Protagonist: My First Mistake
This year, to top off my celebration of Tolkien Week, I’m participating in Hamlette’s Tolkien Blog Party! (Many thanks to her for organizing!) 1. What’s your favorite Middle-earth story/book? It may be cliché, but since Lord of the Rings is one of my top three books of all time, it’s that one. I count LOTR […]Read More Tolkien Blog Party 2018!
Happy Tolkien Week to one and all! One of the aspects of Tolkien’s work that fascinates me is its depiction of Evil. Not only can this mild-mannered, somewhat niggling professor write some truly terrifying scenes, but I also appreciate the thematic truths that inform his portrayal of Evil. I love a good subtle villain as […]Read More Tolkien’s Three Satans and Why They Matter