A very interesting read from author Morgan Smith.
Lately, the big thing in fantasy writer advice blogs and articles is about not stereotyping.
It’s always been a trenchant criticism – writers, especially writers new to writing, tend to add in cardboard cut-outs, rather than fully fleshed-out people. It’s almost unavoidable with very minor characters (innkeepers as fat slobs with no brains to speak of; prostitutes with hearts of gold; bribable city guardsmen; the list goes on) but, as we are all aware, unforgivable for those constructs who play more than a one-liner, walk-on role.
And that’s as it should be, because it’s lazy. Even for those peripheral characters that exist only to get the protagonist a hot meal or hide her from the villain in some squalid back room, it’s pretty boring. You know what? An innkeeper could be lean and hungry, prostitutes occasionally are unfeeling, and at least some soldiers have more morals than an alley-cat.
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