The book is easily navigated. It starts with discussing Archtypes and why we should use them, the how to use the Archtypes.
"Archtype: Image, ideal, or pattern that has come to be considered a universal model. Archetypes are found in mythology, literature, and the arts, and are... largely unconscious image patterns that cross cultural boundaries." - Encarta
Section two lists the Female Heroes and Villains (Schmidt's own discovery of the Female Myth, after being told by her professors that there was no such thing, is fascinating), section three the Male Heroes and Villains. Following is Creating Supporting Characters, the Feminine and Masculine Journeys, Plotting the Feminine Journey, Plotting the Masculine Journey. The appendix includes worksheets.
Each Archtype's character is explained and then broken down to... What does s/he care about? What does s/he fear? What motivates her/him? How do other characters see her/him? Developing the character arc. Assets and flaws are also listed. Their villainous side is discussed, followed by examples of the character in TV, movies and literature.
Following is a list of the Archtypes covered in this book.
Female Heroes and Villains are:
Aphrodite: The Seductive Muse and the Femme Fatale
Artemis: The Amazon and the Grogon
Athena: The Father's Daughter and the Backstabber
Demeter: The Nurturer and the Overcontroling Mother
Hera: The Matriarch and the Scorned Woman
Hestia: The Mystic and the Betrayer
Isis: The Female Messiah and the Destroyer
Persephone: The Maiden and the Troubled Teen
Male Heroes and Villains
Apollo: The Businessman and the Traitor
Area: The Protector and the Gladiator
Hades: The Recluse and the Warlock
Hermes: The Fool and the Derelict
Dionysus: The Woman's Man and the Seducer
Osiris: The Male Messiah and the Punisher
Poseidon: The Artist and the Abuser
Zeus: The King and the Dictator
Reading the descriptions and examples you'll "see" your character in one of them, and once you understand that character type you'll be able to write a richer character.
Have you used Archtypes to help define your characters?
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