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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Character Clinic: Draghixa Samantha Schmidtweiler

I've got Darin's character Draghixa from his sci-fi horror on the couch this week. She was made in a lab by a scientist to be an animal, but she's not. She has feelings like a human. She was raised in a cage like an animal, but read The Fey Dragon Chronicles as a father would a child. When she was sent off the planet for field trials, she was raped and had a son, who was taken from him. Draghixa doesn't want to kill humans like she was intended to do. Not doing so--being better than them--has given her meaning. She has a human male friend, Jacob, who she would love to have a family with if they can find her son, but she also asked Jacob to kill her because she's too afraid to do it herself and doesn't want to live like she currently is.

Darin didn't have any specific questions he wanted to ask, so I'll just jump in.

I'm sure your book is much more specific with what exactly Draghixa is, although it was hard for me to tell from your intake form. But you wrote that she looked like an animal, so I've kinda got this picture of one of the actresses from CATS or something. Is that about right? (Please answer this below! I'm so curious!)

Being raised in a cage is something I could talk to, b/c that's fairly translatable to today's time, as is the rape, of course. Some children are brought up so overprotected, they might as well be in a cage. The cage would be stifling, limiting, bringing up questions for her about her lack of freedom. Children who are held on too tightly always wonder about the "outside." What it would be like to break free. Usually there is a period of time when the child goes through a great rebellion, though I didn't see any evidence of that in the intake form. Would it hurt for her to have a short killing spree (or whatever you meant by the "carnage" that might ensue when she was let go)? Perhaps them to feel remorse over killing would be more powerful than to simply let her want to be better than they had anticipated her being.

Perhaps the biggest concern I have is contradictory motivations from her. She wants to live happily ever after with her son (and she's dead-set and determined to find him, which gives her a rock-solid motivation to live, I'd think) and Jacob, but yet she doesn't want to live? When I read that part of the intake, it totally threw me off, because it was inconsistent with her strong desire to reconnect with her son. In fact, most counselors utilize the existence of children as huge motivators not to commit suicide, such as what would they do without you, what kind of legacy would that leave them, etc.

Quite honestly, this story premise interests me b/c it's so unusual. I wish you the best with it. I think you can go deeper with her, for sure.