Shel Silverstein

If you are a dreamer, come in

If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar,

a hope-er a pray-er, a magic bean buyer...

If you are a pretender, come sit by my fire

For we have some flax-golden tales to spin.

Come in! Come in!

Oct 28, 2011

Minor Details for Minions.

Once upon a time there was a little girl. She was not just any little girl, she was a princess and she had a lot of minions. For times sake I will refer to her minions as minion 1, minions 2 and so on. Because they are minions they have no personality and can blend into the background for all I care! One day prince charming comes along and he gets a two page description and the princess and him live happily ever after.

The minions I was referring to were the minor characters of the story. Now there is a common misconception that if a character is minor than it does not need a character profile. But even if you are the third wheel on a date and kind of unimportant you are still you! So minor characters may seem trial but they are still characters and as so they have personalities. Sometimes they can be the comic relief or the know-it-all or the one sane person in a gooey romance.

The take home advice for this is treat your minor characters with as much care as the major ones. If you do this then readers will have a hard time figuring out the love interest. Oh, suspense!

Now, let me just define what a minor character is, before you start writing profiles for the milkman who only says "hello" and "goodbye". Minor characters are characters that appear in the story several times and speak more than a total of 100 words or have a close relationship with one of the protagonists.

So I think this might be the last installment on the character bandwagon, the only thing left would be character description (appearance and what not), I like to do that after the I write the plot so I don't have to keep going back and forth adding important props. I think everyone knows how to describe their characters.

So next up will be the plot and the actual story. I'm planning on dropping everything but homework and writing this story for NaNoWriMo. I'm, shooting for a short story of 100 pages, 5 pages a day will leave me room if I need to extend it. I know it's weird to hear 100 pages referred to as short but most of my other stories are looking like they'll be 200 pages as the very least.

Click here for Alfred, Rosie and the Arab.


Oct 21, 2011

Excuse me miss, your are out of Character...

Once upon time there was girl, she was kind, sweet, loving, wonderful and she never thought a horrible thing. One day this girl went to the market and robbed a bread maker before shaking a little kid upside down for all he was worth, she got sixteen cents.

Stage one of a story varies depending on who you ask. Someone might say that stage one is getting the idea, or that it is creating the plot. Since this blog is my unadulterated opinion, Stage one is what I say it is ;D. Stage zero is getting the idea and stage one is Character development; so we can avoid writing like the story above, saying one thing and doing the other.

I'm one of those believers in protagonist over plot and by that I mean I write character driven plots. It has been my thing seen I noticed, through reading countless YA novels, that in our modern fictional world there is no such thing as consequences, just happy endings. But that is not so for us in real life, ask anyone you want "what happens after A?" and they'll say, "B" not "uh, nothing".

I think stories should reflect that. Yes, fiction should be an escape from reality but the reason it is an escape is, despite all its complexity and amazing feats of imagination we can still find some familiarity and that allows us to get lost in it. Which is why movies with an emotionless robots, or an insect as the protagonist don't do very well. Where is the relatability there?

Now while having a character profile is great you can't exactly just foist it on you readers and say, "you see, here's Alfonso's issue, kids". I did mention, when introducing them, that character profiles are one of the many things writers must write that are never seen by the reader. This is when character development comes into play.

Let's take a look at Alfonso's profile, though it doesn't directly state it you can tell that he is weak, fearful, selfish, greedy, spiteful, and he hates who he is. Now all that is left is to show all this in the story without blatantly stating it as so. This is Character development. It can be shown in how characters react to Alfonso, how Alfonso acts around others or in any given situations. In a way Alfonso's character profile was also character development, it showed his character without saying it. So if you do profiles my way, you really kill two birds with one stone. You get your character down and you already get a feel for how you are going to develop his character in the story later on.

It all goes back to my style of writing. People will say you can't judge a person by their past because people can change. But I don't care how you look at it our past affects us! If we acted one way to an event previously we are more likely to act the same way to a similar situation. If we learned from our mistake then we will do things differently but we are still affected.
I guess you could say I'm fascinated by the emotional baggage we carry around on a daily basis. So my plots are generally born out of a character's past mistake(s) or action(s).

So this is why all the writing that doesn't technically get seen is important, because it does show, it is the difference between a two-denominational character and a complex character.

Oct 14, 2011

A New Approach.

There was a clock, that sat atop a great clock tower (why where else would it sit) and every day that clock would chime at two thirty in the afternoon. At the sound of the chiming clock the citizen of this fairytale-ish village would wake from their immobility. Some called that time the Hallowed hours; though that was not very accurate for the Hallowing lasted over many hours.

As the years went by the Hallowing hours seemed to last over days and no one could do anything to stop those day hours. The villagers even tried fiddling with the great clock but nothing seemed to work. Those silent hours still came and they seemed to last longer every time.

This was because the little girl was not little anymore, she had not the time to be constantly writing the happenings of their little village, or even to think about them. Her life was filled with other such things. Her mind longer evening power to that great clock and so the Hallowing continued.

The reason this blog has been terribly sparse as far as the whole posting business goes is it only covers one aspect of my life and that part has been put on the back burner of late. I have being trying to make writing a bigger part of my life but life just doesn't seem to want that.

Between school, homework and sports there hardly seems anytime to write away more :( I remember when I was in high school I had so much time I could lend it out to my neighbors but now I'm going door to door asking for it back and finding its all used up.

So I'm going to try something different, it's called organization. What a novel idea huh? I'm going to try to set aside every Friday to do a blog post and if I can't think of any little inspirational writing nuggets well I'll just have to put up something else...Have I ever told you I've got this boot fetish??

However, today is not one of those days, I've uploaded the second character profile of story, the boy Darius.


Oct 7, 2011

What a character...

Procrastinating no longer, I've managed to force myself to put up the character profiles for the Romantic Vampire project.
When I first promised to put up the profiles, a very long while ago, I knew very little about making a character profile let alone enough to conveying the idea of making a character profile. So I psyched by myself out of posting them, for various reason, 'they're too hard', 'they're confusing', 'I can't do it.' All of these entered the mental conversation I had with myself until I gave way to the negative and didn't post them.

If you're a writer you already know this feeling, but if your not and you know someone who is a writer then this bit of information will help you better understand why they seem crazy at times. A writers worst enemy is his/her own head, we have this terrible habit of over thinking everything until it's far too complicate and sometimes we give up.

But the great thing about this blog is I get to look back and learn from my mistakes so I really shouldn't be afraid to put stuff up here--only I hate making mistakes!!

So before this post gets any longer, I'll jump straight onto answering the question 'What is a character profile?'. However, I do think that the character profiles are pretty self-explanatory but here is my quick answer.

A character profile is basically a prologue to the story that the reader never sees, the length of which depends on how long your character has lived or how much you like to write. It is a detailed synopsis of your characters life up until page one. It makes writing, flash backs, past connections and long lost lovers a lot easier. Also it helps to make the characters motives and feelings more realistic when they are based off of passed events. Also your not just making stuff up as you go.

If your a writer, reading this you've probably already realized how much writing an author write that never make it on to the printed pages but is terribly necessary.

Why do we torture ourselves so??

Okay so here is the end to my rambling and you can now check out the character profile for 'Alfonso the Illusionist.' the rest will join him soon.

So enjoy, it was a long time coming