Questions About Heroes

Yesterday (Aug. 31) was National Heroes’ Day in the Philippines. Coincidentally, I also finished the novella I’ve been working on since October 2014 on the same day. Hooray!

Being high off the triumph and unable to keep my brain from running on ideas, I’ve begun to brainstorm what the next work I set in the same world–namely, an alternate 15th-16th-century Philippines–will be about. One plot thread is definitely about heroes and heroism.

So, related to both National Heroes’ Day and these future works, I have to ask:

  • What makes an ordinary person a hero?
  • Who decides who becomes a hero, and how?
  • What sets heroes apart from ordinary people?
  • Related to the above, what are the differences between mythic heroes and folk heroes? Between National Heroes and modern-day ones?
  • If a hero were in trouble, how much would risk to help them out, if at all?

If anybody, especially someone from the Philippines, has answers to some or all of these questions, I’d love to know in the comments. 🙂