Inspiration

Sometimes inspiration strikes at the oddest times. Sometimes, though, it comes when I call it. Maybe inspiration is a cat.

Because this post will contain some spoilers for Salyx, I’ll put the rest “below the fold”, as all the kidz say theze dayz.

Wow, does that last sentence make me sound as old and crotchety as I think it does? It does? Oh well.

Anyways.

Like I said: Salyx spoilers below.
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Still with me? Okay then. You Have Been Warned.

Salyx has a villain who isn’t really revealed as a villain till the third act. I was toying with why she becomes a villain, trying to find motivations beyond the surface one that I’ve already established, and I hit on something that seemed to send her in the opposite direction: I thought, what if she falls in love during the course of the novel? Well, but then her reasons for turning nasty are lessened even more, since the root of her darkness is the death, decades ago, of her beloved husband.

Hmmm, says I. If my villain’s motivations are weak to me, readers ain’t gonna believe them either. I don’t want her to be the villain because I need her to be a villain.

Then, tonight, as I sat down to start some writing on the story, it hit me:

Her new lover dies too.

That easy. And it fits with the story, too, because the planet is a young colony, and its population is still struggling with the after-effects of radiation sickness suffered by the first colonists, thanks to flawed shielding on the colony ships.

So. To work!