First, I would like to apologize for posting this late, I have had family issues come up in the last couple of weeks that has thrown everything out of wack. I also have to have surgery within the next month, and hopefully after the dust has settled I can resume being prompt. Until then, I will do my best to keep up, but I make no promises.
I wanted to use this character development feature to talk about creating fantasy characters that are whole beings instead of just mythological phantoms. My favorite character so far has been a bipolar hobgoblin named Dermond.
Dermond’s character developed from a mildly scary punk enthusiast, to a whole person when I decided to incorporate a serious challenge into his mental make-up. I made him bipolar. His brain chemistry was irrevocably tied to the use of his powers of body control, and as he had to use his powers to survive in the freezing cold of winter in Greenland, his mental health changed with it.
When OLD BLOOD started, Dermond was in a depressive state. He was moody, sarcastic, but not really threatening. As he entered Greenland, and his body shifted to accommodate the temperatures, his mind shifted into a state of mania. He struggled with violent urges, serious mood swings, barely controllable lust, a lack of sleep, and a raging need to return to the Otherworld so that he didn’t have to hide from mortals anymore.
I loved working with him because behind all of this ugly that was in his brain, he was absolutely loyal to the people that he loved. He was, beneath his disorder, a wonderfully loyal, loving, forgiving, and selfless person. Combining his warring urges and needs created a tension in him that bled over onto the other characters, alternating between scaring them and comforting them. They would not have survived without him, but they really really didn’t know if they would survive with him.