(Quote from Uncle Ben in Spider-Man)
Many books, and many great tales, whether science-fiction, fantasy, historical fiction, or actual historical happenings, consist of the hero starting out as a “nobody”, or a person of low rank. The hero is a humble farmer, a lowly peasant, the runt of the family, the nerd of the school etc.. These stories create a pleasing and encouraging sentiment that even the smallest people of society can make a big difference, and a difference for the better. The chances of this happening is slim, but it is still possible, and the stories usually stress that the good or victory obtained by the lowly, humble hero come about through the morality of the hero’s choices. We can see this in fantasy stories like The Lord of the Rings. Frodo is a hobbit, small and weak in comparison to many off his own allies, and definitely puny in the face of his enemy, Sauron and his forces. Yet, Frodo’s (and Sam’s) decisions to persevere bring about, in however a roundabout way, the defeat of their enemy. Frodo is no king, no mighty warrior, and yet still it falls to him to destroy the Ring…and he does. He is a great example of how the little people of society, and the most unlikely, can bring about the greatest change.
Other stories like The Inheritance Cycle feature heroes that come from lowly ranks of society. Eragon is a farm-boy living practically in isolation from the rest of the world, and yet still he is chosen to be the next dragon rider and is given the task of defeating Galbatorix…and he does. Even Katniss from The Hunger Games comes from the poor District Twelve and becomes a hero (I’m still unsure about heroism in The Hunger Games though…). Luke Skywalker from the most famous Star Wars trilogy is supposed to be a boy, or a teenager, and he too comes from a poor family. Luke is definitely a “nobody” until Obi-Wan Kenobi finds him.
Perhaps, you might think that my book won’t be any different. These are all great stories; why would anyone want to divert from the path set by such wonderful examples, which are bound to lead a writer into success? This is where the catch comes in, a question that should be asked: What about a story where the people in power actually do something for the good of the people?
Despite The Lord of the Rings when the people of power do give aid against Sauron (Aragorn, Theoden, Faramir), more often than not those who hold power in stories are always abusing it. Look at The Inheritance Cycle, The Hunger Games, Star Wars, and more recently Divergent. All of the governments, or rulers, are evil, and those in high places stick with the evil governments.
This is an interesting aspect of my book that I would like to proclaim, if I may be so bold. On the first page of my first book, I state that Terren, the main character, is knight and lord of a town. He is no lowly farm-boy, isolated teenager, or the weakest of his race (that last analogy relates to Frodo, but I know Frodo wasn’t the weakest of his race; I was just trying to stress the “weak” part, that’s all!). What he IS is a person of power that endeavors to do the right thing. He’s not lazy, he doesn’t abuse his power; he uses his power to help others. Later in the book, beyond the first two chapters given on this blog, you will also learn that many of his friends are also people of royalty, and other figures of royalty help them along the way. How interesting is it to see that finally, the people of power are doing something to change the world for the better.
Does this happen in our world? Do our governments reach down to help us? What are their motives for doing so, if they do? Is so called “kindness” from our governments just an act? Are there heroes among us in those that are wealthy or possessing power?
Not all are heroes in my book when they possess power and social rank, but the main characters are. We discussed how the weak and lowly smite those who are strong when nobody expected it; now I give you the opportunity to see the strong and powerful return the favor, to see them do their part. It is awesome and inspirational to see the “little guy” do something to change the world for the better, but how much better will society be if our leaders rise to the occasion to become something great for the world; to become heroes.