Monday, October 25, 2010

Animals in writing

I read a few years ago to limit the amount of animals you have in a story. I also read that the hero shouldn't be terribly enamoured with his pets. I can't remember exactly why, something along the lines of if he shows too much compassion towards animals, the reader may find him a little "soft". Also because the hero may direct all his attention towards said animals instead of the poor, neglected heroine.

Now, saying that, most of my stories include animals - ghost cats, horses, pegasus', dragons etc etc. Yes, the heroes are quite fond of the pets, but generally, I make the animals work for their appearances in my books.

Personally, I enjoy pets in stories. They often bring a little light relief from the seriousness, or they add spark to the storyline. Many famous authors include pets in the majority of their story lines. For Teresa Medeiros, it's cats. I read a Georgette Heyer story where the hero's dog was told to sit and watch the heroine, so it did just that and the heroine couldn't even get herself a drink.

To some readers, pets are their lives. They love their dog or cat or fishy friends with more enthusiasm than they love other humans. I think having animals in stories is a good way to connect with a reader, especially one who loves animals.

Ok, maybe not a pet. I could dream

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