“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”
– Plato

Someone recently asked me what my philosophy was when dealing with difficult students at my job or just generally. I said that I believed it was best “to kill them with kindness.” Ever since I heard this expression on MTV’s The Real World: Seattle, I’ve liked to think I’ve tried to employ it when I can. (See, reality TV can teach kids something.)

That quote reminds me of the Plato quote above.

I think it relates in a strong way to how I write my characters. Everyone is fighting an inner battle, whatever it may be. As a writer, I think my job is to coax the inner battle out of my character and onto the page, whether it be in action or subtext.

What relief we can find in knowing we’re all fighting some inner battle at one time or another.

Part of my goal as a playwright is to be gentle with my characters, to humanize and make us all heroes worth rooting for.


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