I’m the anon asking about the character who lived the majority of his life in South America. I forgot to mention that he lived a large chunk of his life in poor areas, frequently moving due to trouble his family would get into, and so there were times were he lived in the streets.
The two most major Brazilian MAs I know of are Capoeira, a martial art that is descended from Africa and was created by the slaves as a method to retain their fighting traditions by hiding them as a form of dance, the other is Brazilian Jiu-jutsu, as you mentioned. I think the most important thing to remember about all traditional MAs is that they take time to learn, if your character moved around a lot then he would constantly have to be finding new schools and instructors to train him. He most likely would spend a good portion of his time covering the basics that he already knew as the instructors established for themselves what he already knows and what he doesn’t. His skill would be decided mostly by how much time he spent training outside of lessons. Also, remember that MA training through a professional school can be both expensive and time consuming, expect the lessons to take up a half hour to an hour of his time no less than three to five times per week on regular intervals. If he is trained by a specific instructor on a personal basis, then it could be a lot more. If he is trained by his parents (the easiest under the circumstances) it may be his whole life like a lot of the kids I knew whose parents were instructors.
Decide this for yourself.
If he lives on the streets and you want a martial art that is specifically Brazilian, I’d suggest Capoeira. It involves dancing, tumbling, and other exercises that make it more of a stealth MA and he could make money off his skills as a street performer. It is a very unique style, however, so make sure you’re comfortable with writing it.
Other than that, it may be he picked up his skills from a non-professional source such as the local gangs and other forms of general street fighting. A character can still be an effective fighter from a non-traditional background, especially if he’s fighting other non-professionally trained combatants. It’s only when we get into it with professionals (of varying degrees of efficiency) that the shit really starts to hit the fan.
I hope this helps!
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reference for writers: Female Serial Killers
rebloggable per request
I was wondering what kind of character advice/resources you would give to someone who wants to write from about serial killer who is a woman? The things they would have to consider? –swelldame
It is interesting that while we have done and written things on…
If you want to write about serial killers then Whoever Fights Monsters by Robert K. Ressler and Tom Shachtman is a must and required reading. The book is written by a former FBI agent sharing over twenty years of his experience hunting serial killers, it’s an in depth look at some of his case files. While this won’t tell you about female serial killers, it’s a good start on learning about the psychological profiling and what we know about male serial killer motivation. It’s a gory read though, so spend some time preparing your stomach before you start.
When it comes to female serial killers, you’re in for a hard road. While there is a lot of information out there about male serial killers in general, females often go unnoticed by law enforcement because they don’t fit the pattern. The best advice I have on that subject is to spend time learning what those patterns are that we look for and figuring out how to subvert them.
reference for writers: When you need to do a lot of research on something
- When it’s a scientific field. If you want to include lots of biology in your book, you’d better know more than ninth grade biology.
- When it’s another culture, or even your own culture in the past. If you rely on only prior knowledge and…
Combat. Any kind of combat, really. It’s not about finding the “best” gun or the “best” form or martial art, or the best kind of anything, because that doesn’t really enter into it. An author needs to understands the martial art and the psychology behind it in order to make it work in their story. It’s not uncommon for a character to completely and be unrealistic, because many writers do think that watching a few action movies is enough.
Guns are not interchangeable, from handguns to rifles. A character who uses a Glock will use it and fire it differently than a 1911. Even your lowest capacity Glock will have nearly double the magazine capacity of a 1911, which changes the way ammunition is handled and fired. A 1911 has a seven round magazine, which means the character will be conservative, it means firing a single round down range. Don’t waste ammo you don’t have, while even the lowest capacity full frame Glocks carry nearly twice that much. With a Glock because you have more ammo in the magazine, because of the way pistols handle, there’s a serious advantage to grouping your shots into bursts.
Each gun comes with it’s own advantages, it’s just the style that matters and what that says about your character’s personality.
Combat from hand to hand to ranged fighting to swords has a unique science all it’s own and it requires research to understand the physical aspects of it, before we even get into the psychological side of the training.
And there is a serious psychology behind it, a character who is a professional combatant thinks differently from one who is not. The way they approach and see the world will be influenced by how much training they have and what they have been trained in. A soldier thinks differently from a spy and a spy thinks differently from an assassin (and two of these are not really combatants) and all three think differently from what a cop will prioritize or how a classically trained martial artist will approach any situation.