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How do you Respectfully Write a "Dirty" Character? (1 Viewer)

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MorganaPendragon25

Senior Member
Threads inspire.
...

'Dirty.'

'Dirty, dirty...'

My obsession before the screen, click, click, click. Back and forth response, back and forth return, but this one times it crashed, fired through screen waters - forever imprinted upon the inside of this skull, bouncing on my eyes! Scratch it, scratch it away, away the pain, yes or write it down? Write it all down I have potential in craft. Purge. Scratch it down! Collaborate with a writer? Yes, yes, together we vision dystopian and a new fascist blueprint. A masterpiece of dark rhetoric, outsider art, I am man of million dolls, or a superhero even? I could be? I perceive world through my rigid lens, my yearning to be among, slashing to save, I am saviour Christ. Save the women. Slash them, save them, save the women from themselves, join the others in the drain, under my floorboards, my women.

'Rape..or any sex for that matter,' to para-quote should continue to be always [be] wonderful material in the right and the wrong hands. On the other hand, c'mon @Earp - I'm not so certain about these 'worthless sluts' you refer to? I was trying to picture the 'worthless slut' arch-type. I am a bit of a worthless slut if you want to pop around..? I can't quite see, driving past the neighbourhoods, 'ahh I recognise, definitely a clutch of worthless sluts in situ, and by definition in that scrag of jean hankie, carry on driver.'

I'm not 100% sure where you were going with this, but I love the dialogue in that first full paragraph. Interesting.
 

MorganaPendragon25

Senior Member
If I might offer one piece of advice...quit respecting your characters so much. No offense, but when it's every other word it tends to lose meaning.

Pull your characters down off the pedestal and let them breathe. Contrary to popular belief, women aren't magical. They aren't unicorns. They're flesh and blood people with whatever that may entail. They make bad judgments. They fuck up. They lose the roll of the dice now and again. That's not an indictment of character - that's the price of living. And the more you deny them the agency of being human, the less convincing they get.

There's a difference in being fair to your characters and being their cheering squad. Give them an occasion where the best choice is still lousy. Put them in a hard circumstance of their own making. Set them across the table from an enemy who's not altogether wrong once in a while. And even if you have them act in accordance with their beliefs, put some barbs to it and show us how they bear up under adversity.

I'd also echo the sentiment about not leading with politics...but that may be a discussion for another time.

Very true. I do respect my characters too much. This character I'm proposing in this thread is a human being, she definitely fucks up and makes some bad decisions. If I'm being true to her character, she can be a bit mean/controlling to people. I should throw her into a chaotic situation and she how she responds, that'll reflect character. Thank you.
 

MorganaPendragon25

Senior Member
Taking the politics out of it, the fact is there are worthless sluts in the world, and their slutness may or may not have to do with their chosen occupations. My point remains: your character, your decision about how to write her.

Thank you. I've decided I think I'll turn her away from a sex work/porn career and have her do something else. Probably throw her in a situation still where she has sex, gets pregnant, and bravely goes the abortion route (because she doesn't want kids, can't afford them, a million other reasons, etc.).
 

Matchu

Senior Member
Needs a bit o' work with the punctuation. [mine] And my advice to you, write with abandon, write with joy, to hell with what everybody thinks. Write your women the way you want to write them. Let us debate your women as we analyse your fantastic 800 slice of prose in the workshop. 'His women are strange!' Jump in two feet first. Make mistakes, write the wrong things, write the right things, but do do write. All best, and I'll be your friend on the forum, no funny stuff.
 

MorganaPendragon25

Senior Member
Needs a bit o' work with the punctuation. [mine] And my advice to you, write with abandon, write with joy, to hell with what everybody thinks. Write your women the way you want to write them. Let us debate your women as we analyse your fantastic 800 slice of prose in the workshop. 'His women are strange!' Jump in two feet first. Make mistakes, write the wrong things, write the right things, but do do write. All best, and I'll be your friend on the forum, no funny stuff.

Thank you so much, Matchu! I appreciate you being my friend here, and I'm a friend to you back!

I realize no matter how I write my women, I will never please everyone here. Of course, there are some people here who aren't a fan of abortions so they'll probably not like (or want) to read about a female character who gets an abortion. Obviously, there are many people here who support abortions and will appreciate a female character doing that if that is her choice she wants. I know abortions are a controversial thing (I don't think they should be at all, but here we are...).

Also, I tend to admire "strong women" and like to write them. Not everyone is going to like my version of "strong women" but I think the majority will once I put pen to paper.

Thanks for the support.
 

MorganaPendragon25

Senior Member
Would be a project for your Saturday? Write an 'Only Fans' perspective. Write either ends.

It's an idea, for sure! I mean, there are women I follow on Instagram who have an Only Fans but don't post nudes. They just post sexy photos and do health advice. If people are willing to pay for that stuff, I will respect how these women make money. Can't believe there are some women on OF who are making many thousands (perhaps $1 million) dollars per year just for being on OF. I heard one OF star charged her fans $200 for one nude photo of her and many people bought it. It's insanity. At the end of the day, she's still a human being like all of us, so you must respect her decision to open an OF and do what she does there.
 

Matchu

Senior Member
I suppose I always underestimate the 'wall,' the barrier to write and to not worry. And I used to be so furtive with my own tiny scribbles, and I still remember 'Sitting On My Arse for 27 and a half Years,' the very early piece, the collector's item hidden in my loft.

And I remember I had a glossy write published almost, months later, the staff-corporation magazine, and I believed the universe had finally finally
shifted like a nuclear explosion. But it didn't shift much, only a couple of e-mails from people getting paid much more than me only...

Rage rage :)
 

robertn51

Friends of WF
A young woman in her 30's, she is important to my protagonist (maybe her cousin or close friend).

The first thing that jumps for me is: What does this "important" but "dirty" side-character have to do with your protagonist's story arc?

You've sketched here the side-character's "problematic" arc -- right down to possibly dying from sex-work-addiction. But what about the protagonist's arc?

Their arc is the story, otherwise they aren't the protagonist, right?

Since the protagonist is to be the story's prominent character, we might want to weigh the effect of such a flamboyant side character?

How does the protagonist feel about their friend's situation? What do they do about it? Where does it fit in their living?

I mean is this side-character a foil, a problem, or is this side-character's life, occupation, and problems, to actually be the protagonist's "quest" through the story?

The protagonist's view of the side-character will be central to resolving questions about how deeply to render the side-character, "dirty" or otherwise.

As for occupations. Will you be detailing the actions of the protagonist as they perform their occupation? If not, then you might ask about the need to detail the side-character's actions performing theirs. Again, it must be the protagonist's story.

However. From the question and the vivid details, it feels very much like the character you've called the protagonist might actually be the side-character? While the "dirty" side-character will be the protagonist? I mean, it feels like, from the depth of the question details, the "dirty" side-character's arc will be the story's main focus.

Rather like Nick (side-character and narrator) and Jay (protagonist) in The Great Gatsby? One looking in upon and reporting the activities of the other?

But forget that wild speculation; that's not what you laid out.

Back to your original rendition.

Maybe tell more about the story's protagonist and what's going on with them along the same story arc?

That might give a clue has to how to render the "dirty" side-character so as to not pull the focus from the story-important protagonist.

I mean, it will be the protagonist's response to the "dirtiness" of the side-character that will determine how the reader feels about the side-character. Right?

Maybe tell more about the story's protagonist and what's going on with them?
 
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