So for those of you who don’t know, when I’m at my worst–whether it is because I’m sick or just exhausted–I liken myself to a panda. (Because even when sad, pandas are cute and cuddly, where as in reality I more closely resemble road kill which is far less inviting.) So today we have the return of tired panda!
Why am I so tired? For starters I finally FINISHED THE REVIVED. I finished it late Friday night, and let me tell you that was a tough book. The Second Age of Retha series, and even The Revived itself, were fun, but it was the book length that killed me. Since I started writing full time, my books always fall in the range of somewhere between 65,000 words (which is the length of Beauty and the Beast) and 80,000 words. (The Desperate Quest and Heart of Ice are both roughly 80,000 words.) The Revived is a whopping 111,000 words. And that’s before editing.
I haven’t written a book that long in years. Life Reader is actually longer than that, but I wrote that book of the course of approximately four years. I slammed the Revived out in about two months, and the book nearly beat me at the end. I did manage to triumph, but for that last week of writing Perfect Dog was pretty upset as I kept taking over her various dog beds because they were on the ground and closer to me than the couch–which would have required me hauling my carcass across the room to reach. Needless to say, I learned a lot from this process. (Namely, DON’T DO THAT AGAIN!!)
So, as you can probably guess, the Hero Poll interview hasn’t been worked on yet due to The Revived taking so long to finish, but I did want to assure you in the meantime that I will still complete it at some point. But!! We can finally review the results of the Most Wanted Hero poll!
This year there were 2,392 votes cast–which means 598 of you voted!
The Most Wanted Hero is…drum roll please… “Villain turned good guy” with 277 votes!
In second was “Intimidating, brooding, gruff, stoic guy who secretly has a heart of gold” with 230 votes. “Sherlock-type genius (Kick@$$-academic)” Took third with 203 votes, “A rival to the heroine (competes with her)” took fourth with 198 votes, “Guy who hides his genius behind a funnyman/class clown persona” came in fifth with 180 votes, and “Anti-hero–sketchy morals, dubious actions, still a hero in the end (Artimus Fowl)” came in sixth with 170 votes.
The one thing I really appreciated–and was honored by–is that this year a number of you said you specifically voted for heroes that you thought would be interesting to see me pull off with my cast of strong female characters. The Anti-Hero seemed to be the one most people voted for out of sheer curiosity, but a lot of you also called out the “rival” entry as being an interesting twist as well.
As an author, stuff like that is a little more fun for me to play with because it does mean taking a stereotype I wouldn’t typically go for and fitting it into the context of my writing.
That villain turned good guy does make me sweat, though. I had to plan hardcore for making Farrin turn good in The Snow Queen. Trying to do it again without it feeling like a copy/paste repeat would be a serious challenge.
Speaking of which, this year’s poll did give me a couple of ideas for future projects, but sadly I won’t be able to tackle any of them for a while due to the Second Age of Retha and Angelique’s series hogging the 2018 and 2019. But I will be thinking about this poll as I design the heroes for my next few books, so thank you for taking the time to vote!
So tell me, Champions, are you surprised by the results? Which of the top winners are you most excited about? (Personally, I really like the Sherlock-type genius, the rival, and the anti-hero entries.)