Writing Strategy: Dealing With Character Bullies in Your Writing

Stories are just reflections of real world– either of the writers’, or of the readers’.

Yes, we have myriad sob stories of bullying around. Even our family members could bully us, workmates, or even between/among nations, and so on bullying is present and wrecking havoc to psyche, economy, peace. This kind of beastly behavior known as “just power tripping over someone or group” is kinda manifestation of being insecure, jealous or envious, or purely a behavior of maladjusted individual, or a nation who knows nothing about respect, empathy, humanity and so on. And, bullies have same profile: they are not contented with their own skin. They are always looking for other people who could be their victim, and in the process, making them feel good about themselves. Pathetic.

As an author, don’t have any problem with character bully. Yes, have met several of them: from silent types to audicious ones.

“I am just joking.” This lame excuse or alibi from a bully is too familiar to me. Many could relate over this, and who, in his sane mind, would be doing such a thing? A narcissist!

Narcissist is a bully to the core. Sans remorse, nothing can stop this person from doing such, especially if bullying is being done in a subtle manner.

Fleshing out a character bully is liken to literally skinning a real bully alive and putting such as a covering to a fictional characters’ body, and viola, a bully personified, in different dimension, even in an imaginary world. You may now add unique actuations, habits, and the works — so as to be convincing and relatable.

Liken to the making of Frankenstein where head sewn to torso, gotten from different cadaver forming a stitched body, a physical vessel of moving zombie — a monster!

Effective character delineation is making readers feel the tension every time protagonist and character bully meet till the climactic phase where such character bully succumbs to defeat, or realizes something right or good — at the end!

Yes, bullies die and their bullying stops with their death, unless they reincarnate under new skin, or had passed bullying virus to their children down the road. Oh my, generational bullies be like!

In my novella, evil giants exist in Imacus Island, where secrets are being revealed: bullying after bullying till Lily, the protagonist, has put an end to it. But, is it not bullying addicting, and such behavior might be present in all of us? Yes, in different ways and degrees though.

Pungky Dwiasmoro Hiswardhani

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