Saturday, April 28, 2012

Designing characters who want to come out to play (and cry and complain, solve murders, etc.) in your stories

Been reading about writing. the books by the guys are different, of course, from the books by the girls. One of the boys writes about how to write the best *** novels, mystery books, detective books, etc. He tells us to draw up the characters before we begin. Write a page or two about them in 3 parts (and this part I like, and I paraphrase) - 1)the physical description, 2)the social upbringing and setting, and 3)the emotional or mental way of looking at life and coping. These are things to take in to account for any character. But, I'd heard of the way I like best (from off the side before, from my peripheral reading) but in the writing book by Anne Lamott, bird by bird, she tells it directly. Let the character unfold as you would get to know a person in real life. Now, I know I need to know a bit, maybe a lot, about them when I get st
arted, but they will explain themselves, get themselves into their predicaments and figure out how to get out, somehow. I give them predicaments too, problems or bad situations, but those are dependent on the character, we make our own problems don't we?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Find the world you unconsciously seek

“They went through their doors. They found the worlds they had always unconsciously sought. It is as I have told you. One takes his place ..and before him opens that existence in which his spirit, his mind, his soul if you wish to call it that—is at home. And he goes forth to seek his fortune there.”

From Witch World by Andre Norton, recommended by a Texas woman writer whose book I found “by accident” in the Silverton library (my town in Oregon), signed by her. She had lived here with her husband for a few years before moving back to Texas. Her book on writing I found to be one that spoke plainly and yet elegantly about writing, after having read quite a few writing books that were boring, pompous, fatuous(“foolish or silly, especially in a smug or self-satisfied way”), shallow, formulaic, repetitive, male centered, and so on...

Ardath Mayhar, THROUGH A STONE WALL : A BOOK ON WRITING. The beginning is worthwhile reading, then she goes on about the different genres and styles for writing them. She defends sci-fi rather well I must admit.