literature

29. Beauty, Brains, and Brawn

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HatedLove6's avatar
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Let's just get this out of the way:  I don't care if your character has a talent, or has multiple talents in each of these categories.  Yes, you can be a genius, enjoy playing soccer and have stellar looks.  Beauty—in that skin-deep beauty sort of—is genetics, or taking a few minutes with a make-up set and a few more playing with your hair, brains is spending time studying, and brawn is spending time playing, rough-housing, or just plain exercising.  It doesn't encompass all the time in a lifetime to have excelled at one thing in each of these categories.  There are a few people—OK, way more than just a few people—who "cheat" with plastic surgery, uppers so students can stay up for days at a time, and steroids.

Fictional characters can have all three of these categories, and don't need to cheat in order to be "realistic," developed, or balanced.  There is nothing wrong with having brains, beauty, and brawn.  Period.  They are three separate parts of your body, and they each can be balanced like the mind, body, and spirit.
If you haven't, please read my Mary-Sue: Who is She? Series first.

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AccessBlade's avatar
And yet if a main character is described as being pretty or attractive in any way, they are immediately accused of being a Mary-sue because oh my god you cannot have good looking characters.