Snarkling Clean

Snarkling Clean- because you don't have to cuss to make fun of stuff. Two dedicated readers discuss romance novels- from what made us weep with joy to what made us want to poke pencils through our eyeballs.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The Adventures of Spunky

I'm re-reading one of my favorite reference books. It's actually about screenwriting, not novels, but I find it very, very helpful. My copy of The Complete Writer's Guide to Heroes & Heroines: Sixteen Master Archetypes is falling apart. In looking over the heroine archetypes, I noticed that my heroines usually tend to be the same archetype. If you haven't read the book, here are the categories, with character examples:

The Boss- Dolly Levi, Queen Elizabeth, Murphy Brown. Self-assured, take charge.
The Seductress- Rebecca Sharp, Delilah, Scarlett O'Hara. Charming, yet cool and savvy.
The Spunky Kid- Lois Lane, Little Orphan Annie, Stephanie Plum. Spirited, cheerful underdog.
The Free Spirit- Auntie Mame, Austen's Emma, Dharma. Energetic, unconventional.
The Waif- Dorothy Gale, Juliet, Cinderella. Pure, kind, trusting.
The Librarian- Joan Wilder, Miss Marple, Dana Scully. Efficient, orderly, analytical.
The Crusader- Erin Brockovich, Joan of Arc, Antigone. Courageous, determined.
The Nurturer- June Cleaver, Elinor Dashwood, Pollyanna. Altruistic, capable, optimistic.

I realized that I invariably write the Spunky Kid. Almost every time. Occasionally I'll veer toward the Librarian or the Free Spirit, but Spunky is just who flows from my fingers. I don't do a Boss well without making her a witch, and I find it difficult to make the Seductress relatable. Don't even talk to me about the Waif. She abounds in fiction and I can't stand her.

Do you find yourself drawn to one type, whether writing or reading? I have to admit, I like reading about Spunky, too. Maybe that's because I'm most similar to that archetype- easy to know the character when she's like me.

Discuss! I'll do the heroes later.


Blogger Bernita said...

Wonder if mine fits The Librarian-cum- reluctant Crusader?

4:35 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Crusader is me--definitely a champion of the underdog, even if the underdog doesn't want a champion.

8:18 AM  
Blogger December Quinn said...

Mine tend to be spunky crusader-nurterers. What can I say, I'm complex. :-)

I agree about the Waif. Bleh. Who wants to read about good things (like romance with tall dark & handsome) happening to someone I would want to kill after half an hour in her company?

12:39 PM  
Blogger Missie said...

Yes, I want to hurt the waifs when I read them.

"Oh, I am so helpless! Please, Big Strong Man, slay the dragon, kill the bad guy, kiss me senseless...then open this pickle jar for me. Wah!"

I just figured out that no friends of mine would fall in the waif category, and maybe that's why they're my friends?

I personally am more of a spunky (but aint no way I am investigating that sound out there in the dark by myself with just a flashlight and a hope for the best), nurturer (come here and let me fix your hair, it's sticking up--and do you have enough cola or can I get you more?), somewhat librarianish crusader (let's go storm the castle...but does anyone have to go potty first?)

p.s. And pertaining to nothing in this post....

I just found my 13mo old daughter picking through the trash can. Which wouldn't have been that bad in and of itself (or that surprising, really), except she had decided to eat a mouthful of dryer lint. Yes, folks, you read me right. DRYER. LINT.

It does not get that much more glamorous than this right here.

1:44 PM  
Blogger December Quinn said...

LOL Missie! I once had my 4-year-old (3 at the time) saying "Yuck, yuck" next to me. She was trying to eat some horrible thing that looked like a dessicated pea. I made her give it to me and asked where it came from.

"My nose," she said.

7:12 AM  
Blogger Bernita said...

First things my kids headed for when they learned to crawl was the dog's dish.

10:24 AM  

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