It’s June 15: Aisha’s birthday! ? What better day to unveil her redesign for my Aisha/Nex fanfic Baby Steps? Call it her re-birthday! ? Here she is, thanks to the talent and hard work of PirateHearts (www.deviantart.com/piratehearts):
Some notes about her new design:
- I wanted her to look closer to her age (mid 20’s) and less stylized than in Winx Club.
- We based her design on how she looked in Winx season 2-7, not the kindergartner-in-college redesign from season eight. (Let’s pretend it never happened.)
- She wears a lot of one-shoulder tops and tank tops in Winx Club, even in her first fairy outfit, so that’s what we chose for her. We made it her signature color, aqua green, as a reference to her water magic. I felt like pants looked better with this outfit, but she’ll wear skirts and dresses sometimes.
- Instead of sneakers, we chose a shoe she could slip on quickly. She’s impatient, so it fits her character.
- I like how her earrings don’t mesh with the rest of the outfit — yes, that was on purpose — which hints how she doesn’t care about fashion rules but still likes to look nice.
Aisha’s Story in Baby Steps
If you’ve watched Winx Club, you already know the basics of her story. She had little freedom growing up because of her parents’ strict rules and control, but she’s on her own and living her life. The key difference is she’s not a princess. This time, she’s the daughter of a politician. I haven’t decided which office her dad holds yet, but he won’t be a president or something because this isn’t a Disney Channel movie.
At the beginning of the story, Aisha has recently moved to a new city to pursue dancing professionally. It was one of her few outlets for self-expression when she was a kid, so it means everything to her. She spends most days bouncing among work, the gym, and auditions (when available).
What about her social life? She has a coworker she meets for lunch now and then, but she doesn’t have many friends yet. Nex will help change that.
Aisha Finally Gets a Character Goal
One problem with Aisha’s story in Winx Club is she has no character goal. We know what she wants — to escape her restrictive life — but she succeeds in her first episode! Now, her story is a series of random events, mostly tragic. They’ve involved people and places dear to her, yet they haven’t felt personal enough.
To quote my favorite AuthorTuber Abbie Emmons:
The mistake most writers make is they start thinking up these terrible experiences for their character to go through, and they start thinking, “Yeah, that would be horrible for anyone to deal with!” …When you start saying things like “anyone” — “it would be horrible for anyone to deal with” — you know you’ve lost touch with the internal conflict of your character.HOW TO BREAK YOUR CHARACTERS (3 ways!)
I think that’s why her misfortunes feel forced to the Winx fandom: they’re sad, but they don’t tie into her internal conflict. They might as well have happened to another Winx! Wouldn’t they have been just as upset? So why did Aisha have to suffer?
To keep her relevant. If the writers had given her a character goal, they could have crafted obstacles that affected her both externally and internally. She’s had a few unique moments like when she earned a power-up in Winx season two and overcame her urge to withdraw from her support system in Winx season eight. But overall, her story has been all over the place.
So, goal #1 for Baby Steps was to give Aisha a goal — to let her work towards something besides a relationship. That’s right: becoming Nex’s girlfriend is not her goal. Baby Steps is a love story, so their romance will be significant to the plot, but it won’t be the only thing they care about. They’ll still have to juggle jobs, friends, hobbies, and family circumstances like we all do.
What is Aisha’s goal? To become a professional dancer. At least that’s what she wants. She doesn’t realize what she needs yet.
And no, it’s not Nex. The “you’re all I need” cliché in love stories needs to die. Depending on your significant other for your happiness, especially to where you can’t live without them, is unhealthy. I want to write not only more moving love stories for Aisha and Nex, but also ones that reflect more realistic relationship expectations.
That’s it for Aisha. PirateHearts is working on Nex’s redesign now while I write his backstory. Stay tuned for more info!