A lot of people (authors and others) helped me on the road to publication, and so I try to give back by helping others. One thing that I do is volunteer my time to judging writing contests. I am currently judging a contest where I find myself struggling with a couple of entries. My concern is that I am aware of the scores given by the other judges on the same entries, and mine are much lower--something unusual for me. The problem I see is that the characters within the story are very passive, or at the very least reactive. And so this leaves me wondering, how do readers feel about the proactive versus the reactive or passive character?
To explain, the reactive character is the one who responds to things as they happen to her or him. While the proactive character is the one who sets out to accomplish things instead of waiting for fate (often in the form of another character) to take a hand. To me a mark of a strong character is that they are proactive, that for the most part they don’t have a fatalistic attitude, or at least if they do, by the end of the book this is resolved and they are now proactive.
How about you? Do you see being proactive as something all main characters should be, or set out to attain? Or is it okay to let the characters simply react to the unfolding story, so long as they do so in a sufficient manner?
And on a whole other note, Happy Birthday!! Quite a few of the Aphrodisia authors are Leos, and either celebrated their birthday this last week or on the cusp of doing so. May the year ahead be the best yet!