June 9th, 2010

wayfaring wordhack

Writing about Writing - Day 9

9. How do you get ideas for your characters? Describe the process of creating them.

What comes first, the chicken or the egg? That's the way I feel about how characters occur to me.  I cannot think of an instance where a character idea came to me that was devoid of any kind of situation or context. I often have what I think of as a "flash," in which a person plus action/setting stamps itself on my brain in vivid detail.

Sometimes, I have only to turn my attention to the person and their personality and past and possible future come pouring out.  Other times, I have to ask the questions: "who are you?" "what are you doing here?" "what do you want?" to help form the character in my mind. A third type of creation comes after an idea.  Meaning, a what-if or an event occurs to me, and I have to ask what kind of characters belong with those circumstances. So process really depends on how fully formed the characters and their needs are at the beginning. Perhaps unsurprisingly, characters and their more-or-less complete story arcs occur to me a LOT more easily now that I've been writing for a while.

Under the cut, I've detailed what came first character or plot for each of my WIPs and planned future novels.

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wayfaring wordhack

Here by Glimpses Known - The small things

It has been raining for the past few days. I feel it is chilly for June, and I don't think it is just me coming back from life on a sub-tropical isle. So, to spotlight what I feel June *ought* to be like, a few photos from before the drizzle set in.

A damselfly down by the stream:

My, what blueberry eyes you have!

Wild irises. They're so elegant.
I much prefer them to the domesticated varieties:

  What in your life is calling you,
  When all the noise is silenced,
  The meetings adjourned...
  The lists laid aside,
  And the Wild Iris blooms
  By itself
  In the dark forest...
  What still pulls on your soul?

   ~~Mevlana Rumi (1207 - 1273)

Playing around with Aperture:  


Coquelicot et colza

wayfaring wordhack

Gotta love words of wisdom

I am starving. I just ate. It is the baby, not I, I'm telling you. But oh, do I want to raid the fridge! Instead, I'm looking at recipes and fantasizing about food. In doing so, I came across this quote:

A gourmet who thinks of calories is like a tart who looks at her watch. ~~JAMES BEARD

Hear, hear for James Beard!