Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Matter of Character


I figured out what my problem is with this book.  My characters.  When Jo Davis was at chapter the other day, we talked about how her books are character driven as opposed to plot, and I agreed saying so were mine.  We both agreed that if you know your characters well enough, then the book practically writes itself as you know how your characters will react in any given situation.  Think about it.  Think about the person that you know best in your life.  Then say this person is in a traffic accident, the other person approaches the car with a menacing look on their face .. how would this person react?  How about if someone told you that they were planning a surprise party for this person – how would they react to that?  If you know someone well enough, you can pretty much figure out how they will react to anything.  And that’s the problem. I don’t know my characters that well.  Normally when I write a book, I have the characters “picked out” (i.e. magazine photos, etc.), their names and all of that chit.  This one hit me without all of that and I just started typing.  Do you know that I’m really not sure what Casey, my heroine, even looks like?  I think she’s a blue-eyed blond, but I’m not sure.  Nick, my hero, is Hugh Jackman .. that’s a given. 


The only other character I’m sure about is a secondary character named Jit, who is portrayed by Michael Jeter.


  Recently I decided on my H/H for the next book – Deacon and Halley – and I know that he’s Josh Holloway.  







But that’s pretty much it.  


I need to sit down and sketch them out.  I need to find Casey.  I need to .. yeah, I got work to do.

9 comments:

Brandy said...

A writers process sure is difficult, isn't it? I hope you find what you're looking for.

Bailey Stewart said...

Yeah, it is more complicated than most people think. It's not a matter of just sitting down and writing, there is an amount of plotting/planning that has to be done, even for the panster. For me, knowing my characters well can help make up a bit for not plotting. lol

Alexa said...

I still consider myself mostly a pantser, but I've learned THE HARD WAY that what you're saying is true. That was my problem with my last NaNoWriMo story too. I didn't know the characters and even if the characters I had were the right ones for the book. It truly is amazing what goes into writing a book.

Bailey Stewart said...

Yes! That's it .. and I don't have my Casey .. and a hero w/out a heroine is ... um, I don't write those books.

Bebo said...

Don't know about you, but for me part of the process is "discovering" the H/H as I write. If I delve too deeply in creating/finding the character *before* I write it, I lose the story. Same goes for plotting. I need a basic idea/outline/map, then... wing it!

MK Chester said...

I've struggled with this, too, as a character-driven writer (and recovering pantzer). Different things helped at different times. GMC. First person histories. I've even written chapters in first person and then switched them over to third. Nothing works every. single. time. But it can be fun trying!

Bailey Stewart said...

I'm going to sit down this weekend and do some exercises from Kate Walker's book - those have helped me in the past. One of the exercises is for the h/h to write a letter to someone (like a sister, bf, etc.) telling them why they've fallen in love with this person.

Susan, Super Earthling said...

I’ve always been a pantser, even before the illustrious Mr. King coined the term. LOL And I’m happy that way.

For me, Bailey, I know things are clicking when the characters start “telling” me they want to do things differently than I had originally imagined. It’s something I just feel inside. I often wake up at 3 a.m. because the characters are pestering me to make changes. That’s when I know they’ve taken on their own lives and have become real and well-rounded. I listen to them and follow their lead.

I’m pretty sure this sounds like complete gobbledygook (and possible insanity) to anyone who’s not a writer…and maybe even to other writers. LOL But it’s the way my creative process seems to work.

Love the new look for the blog. But I also loved what you had before with the stripes.

BTW, I finally (took me 2 damn weeks!) finished the drawings for my vacation from hell post and got it all up on my blog yesterday. Take a peek when you have a chance. :)

Bailey Stewart said...

Oh Duchess, they're telling me nothing .. and I think it's cuz, well, if you don't have your heroine picked out how can she talk to you? She ain't talking ...

And I've just been over there .. you crack me up!