Balance AND Archetypals!

Question: I have long since wanted to write a series of novels but the questions that have prevented me from doing so and almost taken my passion away are...

1.) Would killing a character who pursues the goal in a story affect the balance of the story? 'Cause in one of your articles about the orphan boy it read that there must be balance.
And....
2.) Since reading the article about Archetpals-I think the only Major Archetpals are....Emotion,Reason, the sidekick,the Guardian,the protagonist,the Antagonist and lastly the contagonist which makes me wonder why the series called Heroes of Olympus doesn't make sense to me anymore.
Why it doesn't make sense to me anymore?
Well,because there are like 8 or more Major Archetpals when there should be only 8.
And....if there is only 8 Archetpals-Why dont some fit the roles of the Contagonist and so forth?
Which makes me think what roles do they fit?
To help out in this question-some of the Major Characters I do know of are...Leo,Hazel, Annabeth, Frank,Jason,Piper,and of course we all know Percy Jackson. And... if you haven't read the Epic, long books you can go to Wikipedia and look up the Heroes of Olympus-there they give you a whole,short,detailed overview of the plots n characters. Plz help!

Answer:

1. There's nothing wrong with killing off a character. Sometimes this is done as a Forewarning of what might happen to others if the goal is not achieved, or as a Cost that demonstrates how important it is to achieve the goal. Sometimes it is done just to make the villain unlikeable, so we know which side to root for.

2. I confess I haven't read the Heroes of Olympus series. However, not every story uses archetypal characters. The archetypes are typical ways of grouping the 16 dramatic functions, by assigning one action element and one decision element to each of the eight characters.

However, a writer can assign the elements in different combinations to make non-archetypal characters. The only rule is that you shouldn't assign two opposing elements to the same character, otherwise he will be arguing with himself.

You can have characters who do not play a dramatic role (and have no elements assigned to them), or perhaps play a dramatic role in a sub-plot but not the main plot. You might assign only one element to each character, giving you 16 characters.

And, although it is not as strong, not every story has characters to represent all the elements.

Consider that stories would become very boring if the archetypes were really obvious in every book. Part of the trick in writing is to dress up the dramatic functions in new disguises so that most readers won't even think about a character's function - just enjoy seeing it in action.

Click here to post comments

Join in and submit your own question/topic! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Character Invite.


 Step-by-Step Novel Planning Workbook


NEW! Make Money Writing Nonfiction Articles


"I've read more than fifty books on writing, writing novels, etc., but your website has the most useful and practical guidance. Now that I understand how a novel is structured, I will rewrite mine, confident that it will be a more interesting novel." - Lloyd Edwards



"Thanks to your "Create a Plot Outline in 8 Easy Steps," I was able to take a story that I simply just fooled around with and went willy nilly all over, into a clearly defined, intriguing battle where two characters fight to keep their relationship intact, and try to find a balance in control of themselves and their lives. Thanks to you, I'm not ashamed of the poor organization of my writing." - Nommanic Ragus

"I am so glad I found your site. It has helped me in so many ways, and has given me more confidence about myself and my work. Thank you for making this valuable resource, for me and my fellow writers. Perhaps you'll hear about me someday...I'll owe it to you." - Ruth, Milton, U.S.A.

"I never knew what to do with all the characters in my head, but since discovering Dramatica I am writing again in my spare time. Thank you for making this available. Yes, it is a bit complex, and it does take time, but I love it because it works." - Colin Shoeman

"I came across your website by chance. It is a plethora of knowledge, written in a simplistic way to help aspiring writers. I truly appreciate all of the information you have provided to help me successfully (relative term) write my novel. Thank you very much!" - Leo T. Rollins

"I can honestly say that this is the first website that is really helpful. You manage to answer complex questions in relatively short articles and with really intelligent answers. Thank you for taking the time to write these articles and sharing them so generously." - Chrystelle Nash

"...had no idea that a simple click would give me such a wealth of valuable information. The site not only offered extremely clear and helpful instructions but was a very enjoyable read as well. The education from your wonderful site has made me a better writer and your words have inspired me to get back to work on my novel. I wish to give you a heartfelt thanks for How to Write a Book Now, sir." -- Mike Chiero