Updated: Jan 26
The Creator archetype can be one of the most fun to write. What's more fun to write about than an inventor, a creator, a character who makes something from nothing? But as much as the characters who fit this archetype are similar, they can also be VERY different.
Characters who fit the creator archetype can go one of two ways. They can either tinker and play with different inventions and objects for good like Tony Stark or they can invent and create things for a selfish or evil purpose. Dr. Frankenstein, anyone? Or think about the evil genius who creates a machine to destroy all his enemies.
While you may think of a creator as your determined protagonist or a fun side-character, they can also be some of the most terrifying villains.
A villain that can create whatever he needs whenever he needs it? Yeah, that's scary. Or the scientists who have good intentions but create something that destroys and kills? Looking at you, Jurassic Park. Whether your Creator villain had good intentions at the beginning or not (or a sad tragic backstory? yes, please), that doesn't matter when their creations wreck havoc on the world. It's whether they try to stop their creations that really makes the difference in whether they're a creator hero or a creator villain.
But maybe you're creator isn't the star of your story. Maybe they are a supporting character or someone there to give your hero the items they need to successfully fight off the villain or the antagonist. The first that comes to mind is the one and only Edna Mode from The Incredibles.
A fashion designer for superheroes who will judge you and your fashion choices with a level of sass and accuracy that no one can match. Need a super suit that will stand up to temperatures of 1000 degrees and be machine washable? Edna is your lady! Her creations get her clients through any and all possibilities even if the person wearing one of her designs happens to be a baby.
This archetype also includes (as I mentioned above) the true inventors and tinkerers like Tony and Howard Stark. They made their money creating things no one else could imagine. Yes, it might have been for their own gain (at least at the beginning for Tony), but their creations ended up doing a lot of good, and, if you've watch Agent Carter, a lot of bad.
Both the Starks inventions ended up dealing with a lot of ethical questions about what the consequences were of creation. Tony ended up helping fight wars he eventually disagreed with, while Howard unintentionally helped those he was trying to fight against to begin with.
The Creator archetype might seem simple at first glance, but when you dive deeper, it can be just as complicated as the most complex characters. It's all about where you take them in your writing. We definitely need more stories with this archetype.
About the Author: Sarah Perchikoff is a writer and blogger, and the Director of Brand for the Writer's Workout. She also writes for Culturess, Netflix Life, and Guilty Eats. When she's not writing, she loves read, watch way too much TV, and further her addiction to Sour Patch Kids and french fries. You can connect with her on Twitter: @sperchikoff