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For Writers: Morally Reprehensible Societies

Hannibal Lechter

Today’s writer topic comes from QSFer Lex Chase:

In spec fic, what about the portrayal of alternative societies that may or may not set well with readers?

For instance, the television version of Hannibal invoked sympathy and sex appeal in Hannibal Lecter himself even if he is a morally corrupt individual.

How would you convince a reader to understand in the context of the world building that the characters occupy, their society and/or practices are not morally reprehensible? How do you invoke sympathy in a villain? How are you able to understand the hero’s life isn’t wrong or horrific like it would be in modern society?

Are you able to understand it’s just a story?

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