marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

a form you can handle

One trick to bringing the gods on stage:  have them deliberately tone themselves down to not overwhelm the poor mortal.


However. . . .

Most writers tone their gods down considerably further than is necessary.  Disguise is a different matter, having more motives, and justifying a lot of toning down, but if the god's sole purpose is not to overwhelm, there is no reason for him to divest himself of awe and majesty.  (We shall gently overlook the possibility of writerly incompetence in rhetoric.  Causes are not justifications.)

For the god to misjudge how much is needed raises serious questions about his competence.  This is unwise.  Making the Powers That Be more foolish than mortals is not sound world-building.  They can hardly run the world if they are all born fools. That the mortal needs a clear head, or is fragile and needs more toning down than most, or the god wants him comfortable rather than coping would all work, but need more development than the bald statement.  Most uses of this technique only confirm me in my opinion that gods belong off-stage.
Tags: motivations, style, world-building: deities

  • decisions and beginnings

    Two ideas are slowly turning to stories. Setting out to outline the sequel to my Sleeping Beauty take, set when she wakes up. I don't think she's…

  • dithering and openings

    Am I dithering too much in the opening? Mind you, I have her face a problem on the first page and get stuck with some work (which I immediately…

  • oh you prince

    There I was having happily matched up the princes to their tales and plugged along with the story. Then I thought of having her father's coronation…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded