I believe that sometimes when writing a tale, stories are fall into whatever the current trend is within that period… time-frame… era? I’m not sure how many years the trend of being “a dark tale” will continue, and it’s not being dark that’s the issue; it’s being dark for the sake of being dark.
Having a dark story, with a dark setting, dark characters (there’s some satire here), dark events happening is fine and dandy. Just let it happen to be dark rather than purposely driven to be dark.
What does this mean? It means you can start out writing with a dark theme in mind, but don’t direct everything else / the rest of the elements in the narrative, to be written to be that way; especially when initial conception or later alterations may not carry a similar tone.
An example would be a typical post-apocalyptic backdrop. Resources are scarce, people barely get by, and civilizations are scattered and sparse. In one town, you may create a character that plays an important role, perhaps an engineer, that may be a bit optimistic and chipper.
Builds a decent contrast to what’s going on, right? What happens next to exemplify this engineer character is the writer making them a one-dimensional grump to ensure everyone in this dark and miserable world is dark and miserable.
Probably a bit late to say, but dark stories aren’t new, so why are they plopping up so much in mediums such as movies and video games? “This is a dark story,” “I like darker characters,” “I want a darker tone.”
I guess life is filled with too much happiness that we need the occasional plot that reminds us life can suck, and that the water cooler chat about the weather with a co-worker you don’t care about is more engaging than that character which craps on everything.
Mind you, this post is a steam vent, and even though I could go on longer – I’m cutting it off here and now. Stop the infection from spreading, right? By the way, I hope people will keep writing dark tales, because the good ones always have interesting lore and characters.
Cheers, and for those keeping count or are wondering about the number of times “dark” was used, it’s 19. 21 if you count the heading title. I should hold off typing out my thoughts when drinking coffee at midnight… maybe.