Wild, Tough and Cheeky: Carolyn Gilpin on Antiheroines

Carolyn is the author of Facing Up a story about a girl trying to pick up the pieces of her life after a car crash ruins her life.

BELINDA: Tell us about Carly, what makes her an antiheroine?

CAROLYN: Carly is an antiheroine because she is cynical, prickly, quick-tempered, stubborn, impatient with her family and pretty much most of society. She is rebellious and smokes and tends to stir trouble rather than smooth things over. But she is also tough, fiercely loyal to her friends, and suffers from inner guilt about the innocent person killed in the car accident which she and her friends caused while joyriding. This is one of the main causes of her issues, and she eventually finds a way to atone for this. Continue reading

Going Her Own Way: LG Surgeson on Antiheroines

LG Surgeson is the author of the fantasy adventure series The Black River Chronicles, including the short story Clara’s Buttons.

BELINDA: Tell us about Clara, what makes her an antiheroine?

LG: Clara grew up on the dirty streets of Aberddu (pronounced Aber-thee) city. She was orphaned during the Summer of Fire, and left picking over the rubble of destroyed temple. She was found by Iona Pringle, a local adventurer, who took a certain amount of pity on the young Clara. She hosed her down, fed her and handed her over to the Guild Below–an organisation famous for its skills in thievery, among other things.

The Guild took her in and trained her in some of their trade mark skills; pick-pocketing, appraising items, forgery, and general thievery. It was in the guild that she met Min, Luce & Angel the other members of her gang and between the four of them they set about making a living by mugging rich people.

Irrepressible is the best way to describe Clara, nothing keeps her down for long. She’s had knock after knock, but she always bounces back. She doesn’t take anything or anyone seriously and she’s not afraid of breaking the law. Clara is a petty criminal who will lie and cheat to keep her head above water. She is loyal to handful of people, but she would still push them out of the way to get the last crumbs in the pie-tray. Continue reading

Straying from the norm: Sophia Madison on antiheroines

Sophia Madison is the author of Blue Ruin, a gothic fantasy about a woman named Maura and the vampire who intends to use her to end the world (as we know it).

BELINDA: Tell us about Maura, what makes her an antiheroine?

SOPHIA: Everything. Maura does things a normal (sane) person wouldn’t do. But she makes the choices we can’t–choices that are too difficult. She wasn’t always an antiheroine. In fact, her character started off as a bratty teenager…and then mutated into this ass-kicking, whiskey drinking, cigarette smoking, bad-ass, cold-blooded, immortal killer. She was the easiest character to write, but the hardest to edit. She’d become such an antiheroine that she became hard to like and relate to. Her actions early in the novel turned readers off. I never thought I’d have to tone down a protagonist before. Continue reading

The faintest glimmer of light: Traci Loudin on antiheroines

Traci Loudin is the author of The Last of the Ageless, a post-apocalyptic adventure featuring the shapeshifting Nyr.

BELINDA: Tell us about Nyr, what makes her an antiheroine?

TRACI: Nyr lives in a morally gray, post-apocalyptic world. She can partially shapeshift to gain the claws, fangs, and fur of a tigress, as well as some of the big cat’s less friendly personality traits. Growing up in the Hellsworth Tribe, she learned that compassion is for the weak, and that the only way to survive in this world is to fight, take what you can, and leave nothing for others to use against you.

She’s a member of a smaller clan that scavenges for booty along the perimeter of the Hellsworth Tribe territory, until her lust for bounty lands her with a mysterious artifact that separates her from her clan before the novel begins. From there she begins her transition from more of a villainous character to more of an antihero. Continue reading

Someone to empathise with: Bokerah Brumley on antiheroines

Bokerah Brumley is the author of the upcoming novella Feather, an urban fantasy about a vampire named Jane, the assassin out to kill her and the hotel she drags him to.

BELINDA: Tell us about Jane and what makes her an antiheroine.

BOKERAH: Jane Jones hides in average. She isn’t tall, she isn’t thin, and she isn’t drop-dead gorgeous. She wears baggy jeans, t-shirts, and has had the same pair of prescription glasses since the fifties. The only time she struts her tail feathers is when she’s hunting in Central Park. For her, the constant chaos of the mortal world is an annoyance, an interference in her nightly buffet. Jane’s caustic and blunt. She’s more than happy staying that way. After all, she’d earned it. The sweet has been burned out of her by the harsh realities of surviving. For hundreds of years, the universe has spun a vindictive web around her. She doesn’t love, she chooses not to have sex, and she doesn’t save anyone’s skin but her own. That is, until her assassin comes along and forces her to risk everything to save herself. It’s not her fault that means saving New York, too. Continue reading

Just trying to get out of it alive: D. Scott Johnson on antiheroines

D. Scott Johnson is the author of Gemini Gambit, a novel about a woman who’s in hiding after she “accidentally-but-sort-of-on-purpose flash-freezes the son of a drug kingpin”.

BELINDA: Tell us about Kimberly and what makes her an antiheroine.

Gemini Gambit by D. Scott JohnsonSCOTT: I went and looked up the definition first, just to be sure I didn’t blow it by getting the basics wrong. Wikipedia says, “An antihero or antiheroine is a protagonist who lacks conventional heroic qualities such as idealism, courage, and morality.” By that definition, Kim isn’t an extreme form of antihero, because at the opening of the story she does have a moral compass and can be courageous when she has to be. But she didn’t start out that way. In her earlier life, Kim was a cyber-thief who thought nothing of destroying people in the pursuit of a self-defined “greater good.” She lost her idealism when those decisions came back to haunt her. At the opening of the story, Kim’s been on the run and almost completely alone for five years because of that.

And, personality-wise, she’s not conventionally likable. She’s not fair, and she doesn’t want to be nice. Kim has anger issues, says what she thinks, and has no desire to fit in or get along. It’s usually her way or the highway. She doesn’t go on crusades, but if people show up at her door needing to be rescued, she won’t slam it in their face. She will, however, probably make them question whether this is the hero they were looking for. Continue reading

I don’t give a shit: Rebecca Lim on antiheroines

Rebecca Lim is the author of the Mercy series, a paranormal fantasy about an angel, named Mercy, who hijacks the bodies of mortal girls.

BELINDA: Tell us about Mercy, what makes her an antiheroine?

The cover of Mercy by Rebecca LimREBECCA: In Mercy and the other books in the series Exile, Muse, Fury and the next instalment I’m writing at the moment, Wraith, I created an amnesiac, exiled creature of spirit who calls herself Mercy.

She’s been forced to live thousands of human lives for her own protection and keeps “waking” inside a new human body with no idea of who and what she really is, and why this is being done to her – a process that I called “soul jacking”. Continue reading