Morals of the Story

First off, I could have sworn that yesterday and the day before, I hit the 'publish post' button. Yet everyone comments on Tuesday's post. And I realize that Wednesday and Thursday were never actually published. Am I making subconscious decisions and hitting the 'save now' button? Really? They're scheduled, but somehow they end up as drafts at the end of the day.

Not that they were particularly epic. Wednesday detailed the losing of my laptop cord, and Thursday lamented my writer's block.

Writer's block which has been taken care of (as of yesterday, at least). My writing-accountability-partner (I really need to introduce you to her...) suggested I interview my characters.

This felt awkward. One of the characters in question was dead and a bit psychotic, and I wasn't looking forward to hearing what was going on in his head. Plus, I had to do it all silently, because I live with people, you know. And when I'm fleshing out characters, I prefer to do it out loud.

But I did it silently, on the computer. And just started out with a question: When did you first notice Jenn Alistor? I thought I was only interviewing the guy, but Jenn started having comments, too. I ended with six pages of interview. Whenever one of the characters made a statement I didn't quite see a motive for {motive being my ulterior motive...haha}, I asked them to tell me more. To clarify. And - wow - they did.

Why did you do that? Why didn't you tell that person? You really thought that would work? Were you really feeling that way? Why were you crying? What did you think when you saw the knife?

I ended with a plausible premise and motive. But even though it was pretty good, it wasn't what I wanted. So I started again, and the result was a four page interview.

Bam. I'm pretty sure I like this, and I'm pretty sure it's what I wanted. Of course, I may feel differently when I open up the file again. But right now, I feel happy with it. Motives clarified.

The moral of the story is: interview your characters. My writing-accountability-partner has told me to do that before, but I didn't...

The other moral of the story: listen to advice. Because it works. You'll be a better writer and you'll have a better story. And who doesn't want that, yeah?

What advice did you not listen to at first that turned out to be quite helpful??

10:00PM, Thursday: Watch me, I'm pressing the 'Publish Post' button as a scheduled post...
10:00AM, Friday: WHY?!?!!? WHY!? I scheduled it to post at 5AM and yet I find it in my drafts this morning! Blogger...please...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

YES, character interviews! Not only are they instructional and helpful to the author, but I think they're pretty darn fun as well.

Glad you've broken your writer's block! ^.^ I'm still in a rut with my current story, and so I'm going back to edit and see if I can't get things to start working for me again.