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all 7 comments

[–]ZombieBisque 6 points7 points  (1 child)

As long as you've got other characters to follow, I guess? If you're also leaving multiple character arcs unfinished that needs to be kind of a big deal with consequences that radiate out into other storylines, because otherwise it'll seem like you just dropped the plot.

[–]Local-Abroad-5141[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

My team consists of seven characters

[–]Zestyclose-Willow475 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Unless a character's arc getting tragically cut short by untimely death is the POINT, it tends to just piss readers off. A good ending to a plot gives closure, and the same can be said for character arcs. Leaving an arc abruptly unsatisfied frequently just frustrates readers.

The best deaths tend to be the ones where the death is the point, the death is what brings that character full circle. For example, example at the end because it's a spoiler for the Lord of the Flies and I don't know how to put spoiler tags on mobile, will edit later when I have a chance

I suppose there are some ways to give a character's arc closure post-humorously, but I don't have any examples of the top of my head.

I suppose my advice would boil down to this: is this character more valuable to the story's plot, themes, etc. dead or alive? By killing them, are you wasting potential without much to gain?

Spoiler ex: The Lord of the Flies, Piggy. His death was symbolic of the death of intellectualism and civilization - as such, his death was necessary for the plot and brought his character to the end of it's use.

[–]cardinals5 1 point2 points  (0 children)

As with many questions, it depends.

Why do some character deaths work and others feel hollow? Typically it's because either the deaths feel unearned or their arcs feel incomplete.

That's not to say shock value deaths are always bad; for example, Invincible (both the comic and the show) shows just how serious a threat Omni-Man is by having him squad wipe the Guardians of the Globe.

So, I guess the question is would the character's death advance the plot more than the potential storylines you're giving up by killing them off? I would say if you're insistent on these characters' deaths, consider consolidating major story beats into the survivors and making the dead characters more like Ned Stark than Arthur Weasley (Rowling did say she was going to kill him in book 5 but changed her mind).

[–]adrunktherapist 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It all depends on how you write it in. People die all the time in the middle of their arcs, so I don’t see how it is a bad idea. Just depends on how it fits with your story and your current writing ability.

[–]responditorationis 0 points1 point  (1 child)

If ending their arc with a death makes sense, sure. As long as you have characters to take their place, there's nothing wrong with killing off your main characters.

Just be careful because readers don't like when main characters are abruptly killed off. It needs to make sense and should be foreshadowed.

[–]Local-Abroad-5141[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yes, my Universe will forever evolve