This is another one of my post-critique befuddlements … you’re all used to that by now, right? In the novel I’m working on now, I have three main characters. My critique group members understood the first two characters fairly well, but so far only two “get” the third character, Renee. Most don’t find her a sympathetic character, which is the opposite of what I intended.
Renee is a tragic character. I want the reader to root for her, but I can’t reveal her sad backstory upfront … well, I could, I just think it’s better storywise to reveal it later. It occurs to me this is sort of like a strip tease. I have to reveal enough to pique the reader’s interest, but keep enough covered to tease them into staying around for more. I want it to be obvious that her reactions are not those of an emotionally healthy character, but I don’t want the reader to dislike her because of that.
The group did some brainstorming on this last night. I have suggestions for changes. Now, I have to decide if these suggestions will work for me … for my story.
So, I’m off to revise Renee’s … er … act. Wish me well.