Michelle asked Paula Brackston:

Do you ever feel like you have to hold back with a character, not give into every characteristic of good or evil that you feel would suit the character because you need to have something left for future characters? Gideon jumps out to me when I think of this question.

Paula Brackston Hi Michelle, do I detect a writer here as well as a reader?
I find myself constantly torn between holding back and letting rip with my writing, whether it is in developing a character or any other aspect of the story. I think you are right to spot that this is particularly important when writing the more extreme characters. I don't think I ever worry about keeping something for future projects; stuff seems to come into my head in darn near unmanageable quantities! No, what bothers me more is the danger of drifting into stereotypes or melodramatic characters. Gideon is certainly an extreme person in so many ways. I deliberately wrote him as quite a restrained, quiet personality to contrast with the frightening strength and lack of morality which govern him. I keep looking for some glimmer of light, some redeeming quality to give him, but he is one of the most out and out 'bad' characters I have ever written.
I've had quite number of readers tell me that they found him charismatic and even sexy. What is it about we women that draws us to dark characters? It interests me. I think it's good to allow ourselves to explore things like this in fiction, so we don't go there in real life? What do you think?

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