Sunday, September 25, 2016
Your Hero is a Genius
Einstein said, Genius is …“regard(ing) old questions from a new angle.” Genius is not a know-it-all but a see-it-all. A true genius makes our lives more difficult, more unsettled. Said another way, it is not easy to change when a genius takes us down a different and new path. Think of how tidy the world was before Darwin. So we evolve.
In writing your hero as a genius be mindful of him earning it, and, of course, we as writers must show the process. Now, that’s tough, because change in a work of fiction must be believable and dramatic. Is your genius hero hard to live with because he is so focused on his creation [picture Doctor Frankenstein]? Must the heroine make him give up his contribution to humanity to love her? No, she should be a good partner and help. Even a genius can learn that one-plus-one is way more than two.
A heroine can be blessed with the same problem (genius). It’s all in how you decide to structure your conflict and characterizations.
The smartest person I had ever met was a secretarial school drop out [to be sung to Beauty School Drop Out], couldn’t do math unless it was home finances, and was “just” a mom. She seemed to read minds and mend hearts as if dispensing miracles. Her reaction time (quick wit & observations) was beyond scary. Say anything and it would be translated into what you really meant. She’d see what was missing from the equation or problem while the rest of us didn’t know we had an equation or a problem. I’m not talking male-female interactions exclusively. Her empathy for another human being gave her an EQ (and I suggest IQ) too high to measure. That’s the point of life, isn’t it? Love at work.
Don’t tell me your character is a genius, show me.
A rare Albert Einstein interview: