“Rule number one.” … “Fail fast, think faster.” … “Learn when to be aggressive. And when to be patient.”
– UnidonExcerpt taken from M. Wednesday’s unnamed WIP “Moon Reign – Book 2” chapter 3
We’re getting closer to wrapping up this series, but I couldn’t end this without featuring the lesson from my favorite character. Yes, he’s the antagonist. Yes, he’s a charming bad-boy. Yes, I know his hands are stained with murder, but there is still the trait of confidence that can be salvaged from his corrupted reputation.
Okay, so, y’all are probably thinking that because I’m writing about my favorite cast member from my book that this post was easy. Ha, nope! Unidon is that character that makes me squirm with unease. He makes me doubt my writing ability and my ability to write him as a person. He makes me nervous, and laugh, makes laugh with nerves. Crushing much? Maybe. Wait… that’s not normal? What do you mean it’s not normal to love on a fictional character? Ugh, curse this realistic dimension!
Actually, no. Unidon can stay in the fictional realm because, honestly, he’d probably scare me with guessing which side of him I’d be getting on a daily basis.
So I can’t release too much information about him, because I want you to find out all those little things for yourself. I will tell you that he’s talented, extremely cocky, and can outsmart any of my other characters. Why? Because he’s been taught to climb a social ladder to get exactly what he wants. And what he wants, is a unicorn’s star magic. And in “A Fallen Star”, a reader will see that he’ll go – and has gone – to extreme distances to reach his goal. Even as far as blackmailing Hardinggate’s Princess. Even as far as shedding innocent blood.
But maybe I’m getting ahead of myself on this. Maybe you do need a touch of his background.
When I say trained, I literally mean trained.
He’d done this. Repeatedly. Sin had been desensitized years back with every identity he’d reenacted. With every soul he’d been summoned to kill. He’d pose as whoever he needed to be. Do whatever he was instructed to do. Whether quick and painless, or slow and seductive, assignment never went uncompensated. Assignment always lined his pockets. (…) Five years of this, and he wondered why his demons still clawed their way back to life.“Moon Reign – A Fallen Star” chapter 51
Assassins need to be trained, and he’s got a whole little mental logbook of rules that he abides by. Rules that have shaped this natural talent he possesses, rules that have carved his ego, that have blessed him with a confidence because he is flawless at what he does. Yeah, my antagonist is a complicated mess. But he walks with the confidence of a general and the brains of a King.
And maybe this wasn’t his choice. Maybe this wasn’t what he wanted for his life. Maybe he struggles with regret. But even with hiding mental conflict, his confidence as a person– employment aside – is stable. He’s naturally ambitious, naturally determined, born with a driving aggression to not stop until he has what he’s been fighting for.
You know, writing a self-confident character, who is also funny, flirty, witty, and just brilliant, was a challenge. I feel as if I’m none of those things. I can make people laugh, but it’s usually because I said something really dumb like, “It’s not a breakfast sandwich if it’s on a bagel.” (Yeah, guilty. But it was 5:15 am, gimme a break) And I mean, the last time I tried to be flirty in bed, I fell offthe bed. So… So stepping out of my comfort zone of who I am typically as a person to get Unidon’s character perfect was… I felt like I was learning something.
Self-confidence doesn’t come easy to me. I live through Unidon for this. He doesn’t walk into a room and wonder what people are thinking about him. He doesn’t quadruple check his reflection for any other reason than to stroke his own ego.
“You,” he pointed to the mirror, “Are a talented son of a bitch.”“Moon Reign – A Fallen Star” chapter 27
Obviously, to be confident you don’t need to be as cocky and arrogant as he is, but that’s just him being him. Let this man do his thing, okay? Moon Reign wouldn’t be the same without him.
Confidence is the ability to feel amazing without anyone ever having to tell you. Confidence is being able to say “Hey, screw you, I’m frikkin’ amazing” without ever opening your mouth, because your walk, your smile, your entire demeanor will say it for you.
To be self-confident is to be secure in yourself and your abilities. It is being willing to take risks and take those extreme distances to achieve better things. Two things that contribute to this are self-efficacy and self-esteem, both of which have grown since Moon Reign was started. Self-efficacy is gained when we see ourselves achieving goals. And self-esteem builds when we can give ourselves a more general sense on why we deserve to be happy. Affirmations and positive-thinking are great exercises to grow these. But that self-confidence is going to thrive when we see ourselves reaching goals.
I’m talking to you, Indie Authors. Look at what you’ve already accomplished! You’re writing a book! The scary part was getting the ideas to paper – the scary part’s over. Think about your strengths. Write what makes you come alive. Write with passion and never forget why you started. Think about why your story, your characters, your goals, what’s important to you and what you want to achieve as a writer. Think about how far you’ve come, all those words, all those plot-line ideas. You have a book that the world is waiting for! Don’t give up now.
Don’t give up now.
“Don’t allow your emotions to overpower your intelligence.” … “Your mind needs to be trained to be stronger than your emotions, or you’ll lose every time. There’s rule number two.”“Moon Reign – Book 2” chapter 8
Manage your mind. Find a way to defeat your negative emotions, negative self-talk, negative comparisons. All that swill only crumble your elf-esteem. Pride yourself as a writer. Have a favorite author, but don’t unnecessarily and overly compare yourself to them. Overthinking your writing career can drain you of your focus and can “overpower your intelligence” to simply just write.
Write. You have one job. Don’t give up now by over-complicating it.
Start a habit of setting small goals. When you see yourself achieving the smaller things, you’ll be able to handle the bigger things because that self-confidence will have grown.
The lesson learned through Unidon: Dress yourself in confidence. Shed the insecurities, one layer at a time, and you’ll change. Don’t ignore your potential. Self-confidence will give you wings, but remember to stay grounded.
Lyrical inspiration for Unidonhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFqr-TWgeZc