Analysis

Five Surprisingly Successful Characters and Why They Work

Boba Fett from Star Wars

At Mythcreants we’ve previous discussed characters who were too unlikable, too isolated, or just disappointing. Some had too much candy or too much spinach, terrible motivations, or too much candy again. But believe it or not, we occasionally run into characters that impress us. Let’s go over some characters that were … read more »

Seven More Characters With Too Much Candy

Captain Jack with a big gun.

Candy and spinach are important concepts because they describe two critical elements of character likability. Candy is anything that glorifies a character. This includes cool powers, defeating a major bad guy, being right in an argument, and anything else that makes them look cool to the … read more »

Five More Good Stories That Turned Creepy

Stan with a shovel over his shoulders.

I’ve said it before: pointing out creepy or otherwise problematic content in bad stories is easy. Bad stories are less likely to have legions of defenders, but more importantly, we’re more inclined to see harmful elements in stories we already dislike. But critics and fans alike … read more »

Six Characters Siloed Into a Separate Story

Eleven eating waffles in the woods.

The more characters in a story, the greater burden it is under. Ideally, each character’s narrative will weave together into the throughline, but that doesn’t always happen. Instead, stories often fracture under the pressure of an oversize cast, splitting off into unrelated plots. In the most … read more »

Five Stories That Don’t Understand Power & Privilege

Mythcreants veterans can tell you that I talk about the dynamics of power and privilege a lot. It’s important that real people understand these dynamics, because if they don’t, they end up blaming problems on the oppressed instead of the oppressor. People operating under this misapprehension … read more »

Lessons From the Hyped Writing of Dawn of Wonder

Art showing man holding sword, with a fortress in the background

As soon as I spotted the cover for Jonathan Renshaw’s Dawn of Wonder, The Wakening, I knew this was the book to critique. “Dawn of Wonder” is already dramatic sounding, and adding “The Wakening” pushes it into melodrama. It doesn’t help that these words border … read more »

Ten Changes Made in the Lord of the Rings Novelization

We all love Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. Its amazing visuals and incredible storytelling helped put speculative fiction on the mainstream map, paving the way for countless stories to come. What’s even more impressive is that it’s totally, 100% original. That … read more »

Six Supposedly Powerful Abilities That Don’t Measure Up

We storytellers love giving our characters special abilities. They’re just cool! They add novelty, let us craft different plots, and make a story’s empowerment fantasy more enticing. But sometimes a powerful ability isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I see this all the time in … read more »

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