Wednesday, May 23, 2018
I'll be hosting an AMA on Creating People May 30th.
Want to know how to write the perfect character for your story? Ask Me Anything and find out how.
Have you ever wondered how to come up with a good character for your story? What makes a good character? What traits should you give them to stand out as a protagonist? Should them be young, old, short, tall, or green? What are the things you should think about when thinking about them? What should your readers think about them? I'll be covering all that and allowing everyone to Ask Me Anything on the subject. Anything from your specific ideas to what should you add or subtract from a character concept.
Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Every since I was a child, I've always been very good at talking. Public speaking, oral presentations, even book reports were easy for me.
During college, I had a report due in which the teacher didn't require a written paper, only the speaking notes you brought to the podium. I remember preparing at my desk while the others went, running over the things I would talk about. When it was my time, I stood up and told them an overview of the medical pathology I was going to cover. In doing so, I told the fastest joke that soared so quickly, I didn't realize I had delivered it. "Today I'm going to talk about the pathology if the intestines. Necrosis, diverticulitis, ect. And I may even out pouch to pollops if there's enough time." It sent half the class into a roar. Neither the teacher, nor I was laughing, but for different reasons. She didn't think it was funny, and I didn't realize I had told the joke. It was just one of the things I was trying to cover in the overview.
Words have always come easy to me. The first draft of the long version of Demon Vampire was 273,000+ words. And the very first incarnation of the story was still 49,000+ words for my only attempt at that point of going full length on a story. So to me, words have never been a problem, except that I rely on them too much.
In conversation, I generally have a calming effect on most. I can stun someone with the shear volume of information I can give them in very little time. Most people tune it out, and I have to repeat myself, but I've gotten used to that. Probably a little too well.
Instead of explaining with avid detail what an environment looks like and moving onto the action. I tend to maintain the same level of detail for length. And when I've cut things short, I generally cut them off at a point that is confusing. Leaving a reader with little or no connections as to what's going on.
I've only recently been made aware that I use words to convey emotions, instead of actions. Mainly, I've done this because I was told at a young age to use my words to describe how I felt. I, as a child, took this to heart, and as an adult, I never had anyone give me reason to think it was flawed in some applications. I know now of course that it is.
Actions can convey many points of view and emotions. Unfortunately, I'm not used to letting them in life or on page. I've focused on what I've said instead of what I've tried to get across. Even this post could be condensed into, "Actions tell more about personal character than words. I just now learned that." But of course, that wouldn't be a decent post, and I haven't gotten that good at it yet.
It's been 14 years since I first dreampt of Zack and Kyli. It's been about a year since I've last asked how they would do this or that in my story. If I'm going to keep them alive as characters, I'll need to start writing consistently again. And hopefully, after I pass a major test for my career next week, and after I can stop worrying about my mother's situation, I will return to asking them not what they would say, but how they would act.
Monday, January 29, 2018
It's been a few years since I've written. I've had a few things happen, but mostly I've realized that I'll never be a full time writer. I have too many hobbies and too many other obligations to make it a career. On top of this, I am not good at editing my own work.
I of course blame myself, but if I had to explain why I murder grammar the way I do, I'd have talk about R.L. Stein's The New Girl. I loved that book growing up. I've read it about four times now and each time I realized more and more how bad his grammar is as an example to young readers. I took a lot from his cadence, patterns, and delivery. Although I added bad spelling to the mix, it still ends up the largest influence to how I write.
I started writing about Zack and Kyli in mid 2005. I envisioned them as the tragic couple at odds with their world. I formed them above all else and soon I had a very clear visage to work from when writing their story. I could hear them. See them. Talk to them. I knew how they felt and how they would react. As I got to know them, my writing continued. Unfortunately my editing skills did not. I am quite proud of my creative ability, but I am equally ashamed of my technical failures in literature.
With each new chapter and incarnation of the story, I got better and better at defining my style and inventive quarks. But I did nothing to improve myself as a writer that can actually write well. I liken it to a painter that can see exactly the vision of what they want to paint, but lacks the skill to show others how it appears to them.
I know now what I need to do to proceed if I intend to. I have got to take a college course on writing. I need to put in the time. Otherwise, my writing will always be considered amateur and be dismissed.
I also know that taking that class for a semester would be nearly impossible in the foreseeable future. There are too many current obstacles. I know in time they will be gone, but for now, I know the truth. They are not going to disappear. I'll have to remove them. And that I know will take time in itself.
So in the meantime, I've taken to writing new short stories on inkitt and blogger using my phone for convenience. Because it does come down to that final fact. The easier it is to do, the more consistent I can be in my writing. And that's ultimately what it comes down to.
So for now, enjoy the writing when it comes maybe once a year. Outside of that we'll both have to wait until I'm able to devote enough time to become a better writer.
Virgil Allen Moore