If you know me from online or know me causally in real life, I would bet my first two character picks were unsurprising. This last one? Well….
In my life I am mostly what you see is what you get. Positive, mom-like, easily amused, and empathetic. But in the back corners of my mind and the far reaches of my subconscious is something else: Some of it is me. Some of it is monsters. All of it is dark, twisted, and unstable.
Professor Stein is all of those things as well. He is from the anime Soul Eater, which is one of my favorite animes ever. It has a very unique art style and a very interesting premise.
The main characters are students at a school run by the personification of death. Half of them have the ability to turn into weapons, the other half then wield them to defeat evil humans and witches. Their goal is to collect 99 evil souls and the soul of one witch. That will give their weapon enough power to be wielded by Death himself.
Professor Stein, as noted by his title, is not a student. He is an insane scientist who thinks the world exists to be dissected and experimented on. Nothing is off limits, even himself. Despite this he tends toward the side of good in his more rational moments. But when a great being of evil and chaos is accidently released, his madness takes over and his insanities return making him more and more unpredictable.
That sounds like me right? Don’t think so? Maybe you need to look deeper.
I have a dark side, everyone does. That bit of you that tells you to do stuff you shouldn’t. It haunts you with nightmares when you sleep. It pushes intrusive thoughts on you when you wake. It is evil to its core, but in me it’s not alone.
Some of it is monsters.
I am tormented by the duel demons of Depression and Anxiety. Not the little bits that come from being human. No, these are the freakish horrors that attacked my heart and soul for uncounted years. With the help of meds and therapy I have subdued them, but they are not gone.
This other side of me rarely comes out. Only now and then do I let anyone glimpse of what lies beneath my surface. Except in my writing. These days my characters take the brunt of my insanities. I channel my demons onto the page and there they wreak havoc on the people inhabiting my imagined worlds.
My cousin and fellow writer, AughtPunk, likes to say she is waiting for the day where I am published and on a panel at some geek writing con. My fans will come expecting some goth/gritty/grimdark person and get a cheery mom that brought cookies for all the attendees. The stories I write at first look like my polar opposite, but really they are a reflection of sinister beasts within, waiting to escape the page and my mind and torment my soul once more.
Or, you know, maybe I just like writing creepy stuff. With me there’s no way of telling for sure.