Boring Privileged Protagonists, or How to Write Relatable Protagonists, Part 2

The continuation of my previous post. If by continuation you mean something sort of on the same topic but about different stuff. So you know, you can read them together, or in reverse order, or just one and not the other. Or none of them at all. Who am I to try to control what you read?

The Writerly Blog of Lane William Brown

I write a lot about diversity in writing. It’s a big topic these days, and there are lots of “let’s make society better” reasons to have important characters who represent the wide swath of human experiences. Sometimes I talk about these, but I also think there’s some value in recognizing that this isn’t just a social issue. This is a better storytelling issue. Earlier I gave the example of how one of the biggest problems with the latest Spider-man reboot is the way they have mishandled disabled characters. It wasn’t just offensive; it set them up to characterize their villains in ways that were detrimental to the stories as a whole. Today, I’m going to return to that line of reasoning, and talk about how reflexively casting protagonists as white, straight males often sets writers up to lazy writing that produces boring protagonists.

I should say right away that…

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