Hey all! I’ve been wanting to revisit some of my older posts on this blog because, well, I’ve matured a lot in the years that I’ve been running this blog. The post we’re revisiting today is Writing Convincing Characters. I initially wrote the post in August of 2010, which is approximately three months after I graduated college. At this point in time, I was still really developing my character development process. And my writing process in general – though I strongly believe that a writing process is something that grows as you grow. It’s constantly growing and evolving.
Characters are one of my favorite things to think up for stories. I love discovering them and learning more about them, hearing their stories. It’s always been one of the aspects of writing that I enjoy the most. However, how I handle it is very different now than I did before.
Character Planning Sheets
This is something I still do. High school me didn’t do very much with them – basically just the character’s name and vague appearance and age. Everything else was kept up in my head, which wasn’t particularly effective. My writing at that time was hugely inconsistent, especially in how characters were acting. This is probably because I never wrote down a concrete personality for my characters. Oops.
Hey all! Long time, no chat. Surgical recovery is going well. I’m still a more tired than I’d like to be, but that will fade with time. I’m working on getting my ADHD under control as well, that too, will take a bit of time. But I’m moving toward being able to function a bit better, so that leaves me hopeful. Once everything is balanced, I should be able to get more work done. In theory. Hopefully. Again, there’s that hope word.
Anyway, it’s been ages since I did a post like this. My last “A Couple Things to Remember as a Writer” post was written in late 2012. Apparently I lost inspiration for the series of posts or just forgot about them for a bit. Either is pretty likely. Anyway, here are Part 5, Part 4, Part 3, Part 2, and Part 1.
I suppose it’s time to return to one of my favorite types of post! Especially since it’s been a good 3 and a half years since the last one.
don’t be afraid to try things
Around March of last year, I was really struggling with my writing. Things that had worked in the past hadn’t been working. Martial arts wasn’t really giving me any ideas, I wasn’t getting much from reading or watching things. But I did play some video games and they made me want to write specifically as those characters. I popped into the RP community on tumblr, which was a big step in terms of putting myself out there. It gave me some really great friends and helped rejuvenate my writing juices, at least a little. It’s helped me dive further into characters’ heads, into their motivations, figured out how they’d fit in different situations. Every single character I write for RP has a cyberpunk verse because I wanted to see if I could. But trying this particular new thing helped me gain a lot of writing buddies – ones who helped me with my grad school application.
Hey all! My posts might be a little slower during April. I’ll be having surgery to remove my gallbladder on April 11th. What I’ve heard about recover varies greatly, so I’m not sure what to expect. I’ll still be doing my Patreon posts, they might just take a little longer.
So this is a post that I’ve been thinking about for awhile – basically since I started actively working on Opus Requiem. I mainly started thinking about it because I was so reluctant to work on the story in the first place that I was wondering if I really should be writing it.
But I knew that I needed to complete the story. Opus Aria didn’t complete the story.
Things I did this time
I realized somewhere around the middle of my outline for Opus Crescendo that I had gone about plotting out a series in entirely the wrong way. I didn’t really plot out Opus Aria much at all, Opus Prelude was meant to be a standalone thing until a certain character just decided to barge in…I was a mess while plotting it out. In that I didn’t plot it out. Mistakes were made. I’m not saying I’m regretting having started a series without much planning, I’m saying that I wish I had done some planning. Having the bones of the story down before I went in would have made things a lot easier.
Like the six months hemming and hawing over the ending of Opus Prelude. Hahaha. That was a blast. Only not.
Hey all! I’m trying my hardest to keep my content rolling over here. My focus is still sucking pretty hard, but I’m doing better in terms of mood and anxiety, so that’s a big improvement. I have a lot of blog post ideas, though this was a pretty random one. I’ve been writing ‘seriously’ since about the age of 11, with various degrees of success. I’ve always had a lot of ideas, though not all of them actually develop into something useful or usable.
One thing (well two) that I was afraid to get into was roleplay. I never thought I’d get the hang of creating a story with someone, especially since so many people took it extremely seriously. I got dragged into it in about 2011 or 2012 and then more seriously toward 2013. It’s funny to think that I’ve been writing like that for only three years. It feels like it’s been a lot longer.
I was afraid to get into it because I’m notoriously bad with getting dragged very deeply into things. I was afraid it would impact my writing negatively. I was afraid that I’d stop working on my personal work. I was very wrong.
Hey all! I’ve had several people ask me in the last month where they should be starting their various creative projects. I understand why they ask – it’s sometimes very difficult to decide where a story needs to start. The simple answer is the beginning.
Of course, writing isn’t exactly simple, so I’ll give the long answer too.
The big, fancy technical term is the inciting action. That which spurs the story. The beginning of the story isn’t necessarily when the character is born, or the start of a day, or anything like that. Think of how some of the more popular novels start.
Hey all. Things are still a little strange for me. I haven’t had much luck in working through this depressive spell. I’m still not producing the amount of writing I wanted to, which is frustrating. I have both of these novels completely outlined, but I just can’t seem to write. I’m having a bit of luck with my writing commissions, at least. And Patreon things. Those I can write.
My own characters?
Not so much.
I think that’s what frustrates me the most. My characters are the ones that aren’t cooperating. Even though I have everything laid out for them.
But what’s the hardest is distinguishing between burn out and depression and the executive dysfunction associated with ADHD. I’ve said it before, I know when I’m being lazy. This isn’t me being lazy.
Hey all! So I’m starting a new, exciting venue for myself on Patreon. Again. Last time I tried this, I was in a really bad state. I wasn’t really in the frame of mind to be doing something like that – and I hadn’t done enough research. This time I’ve done more research, I’m in a better state of mind, and now I write fanfiction.
It’s strange, I avoided writing fanfiction for so long because I was afraid of it for some reason. Haven’t really looked back since I started though. It’s been helping me keep up with my writing even when I’m having trouble focusing on my personal projects.
Anyway, yes. I’m running Patreon. I’m hoping it’ll help me start working toward a real career out of my writing. I’ve wanted writing to be my career for ages, it just hasn’t managed to take off.
I’ll be offering more in depth writing tips, fanfiction, digital copies of my novels, and in some cases, writing tutoring/beta reading! If my monthly income on the site gets high enough, there will be some cool perks as well! Just because I’m running Patreon doesn’t mean I’ll be neglecting this blog. It’ll just have perks!
Please give it a look and a share.
Here’s my Patreon
Thanks so much,