Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Winner Doesn't Take All--Pyrrhic Victories, July 29, '08

Does the main character have to save the world? No, she doesn't, just her part, and that's not always a positive thing.

In the 1st Ikarias novel, Ikarias has help ridding the world of an evil sorceress, but that's after the woman has done some serious damage.

In the 2nd book, Ikarias and friends undo a demon monarch but again there is loss--especially to Ikarias' lover.

In the 3rd of the series, Ikarias wins a war but loses her partner to the daughter of the demon monarch from the previous book.

In #4, so far--Ikarias searches with the sister of her partner-- which sister will die at the end. The partner will have undergone some horrific changes that are probably permanent.

In an early novella I did years ago, the main character sells more than her soul to get the bad guy, which she does. Then she finds out the cost at the end and she's left searching for that which she NEVER would have given up--had she known.

Having a dichotomy is good--it's real, no matter the genre. No one really wins 100% in anything without a secret or overt cost--or both.

The detective finds the serial killer but that is AFTER the body count is way too high. The scientist finds the cure for X, but again, X has killed so many while the scientist was researching, experimenting, etc. that it's a often a pyrrhic victory.

That little term relates to Pyrrhus, a second cousin of Alexander the Great. Pyrrhus fought Rome as Rome was growing mightier with each passing day. He won, but often with staggering losses.

You may have unplugged the fan but the sh*t still hits it :}

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