Drew Perron pwerdna at gmail.com
Sat Jan 27 18:26:58 PST 2018

As you may know, I've been creating book-themed characters for a long time. 
Library Lad first appeared in a post from me at Christmas in 1995 (and then I 
didn't post another LNH story for almost seven years). But something made me 
think, recently, about a character who was used even less; a Super Sentai-style 
hero I created a couple years later for a pseudo-RP-by-post (a la the early LNH) 
that existed on rec.arts.anime.misc.

And way back in the late '90s, I was trying to get in on one on rec.arts.anime 
misc. I was already very much into the tokusatsu tropes, even if I didn't 
actually know the word yet, so I was making a Super Sentai-style character, and 
through the same impulses that lead to Library Lad, decided to make him 
book-themed. But I was at a very early level in the development of my ability to 
make characters who weren't stock archetypes, so his book theming added up to... 
literally just summoning books and hitting people with them. (This was a big 
reason why I never did anything with him.)

I've been thinking a lot about how my approach to characters has changed over 
the years, how it's moved from a character like that, to Kid Enthusiastic, to 
the many variations on Kid E, to someone like Writer's Block Person. I think I 
can sum it all up in a classic Tumblr/Twitter meme, a la 
http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/expanding-brain :

    Small brain: Book-themed character hits people with books
    Big brain: Book-themed character summons letters and punctuation
    Glowing brain: Book-themed character summons characters from books to fight
    Expanding brain: Book-themed character manipulates the structure of fiction 
around them, using the trope of "the hero always wins" to win fights
    Exploding brain: Book-themed character fights the forces that demand such 
limiting tropes as "the hero always wins", breaking through the shackles of 
traditional storytelling with sheer metafictional transcendence
    Galaxy brain: Book-themed character is a literal instantiation of the author 
in the fictional world, delivering the messages the author wants to convey in a 
way that acknowledges that the real-world author is themselves a character, 
created by the deeper, subconscious self interacting with the narrative of 
society, and that one can take control of one's own narrative only by 
acknowledging one's flaws, and instead of simply forcing oneself out of the 
shared narrative to transcendence, taking the narrative and raising it up, 
allowing everyone to transcend
    God brain: The instantiated self of the author avatar hits people with 
books, because dammit, stories should be fun and silly

Drew "so yeah" Perron

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