It’s that time again! I’m dedicated to writing 15k this session and hopefully that will bring me to the end – or at least close- of the first draft of my current novel. I love Nano because it gives me a deadline to work toward. The fact that it makes me more publicly accountable for my promise means I am less likely to make excuses for not writing as much as I could. Anyone else jumping into the Nano challenge this month?
My mind is always working. Even when I am sleeping, my mind continues to work on my stories. It never ceases to amaze me how many times I have found the answer to something I am writing within the vault of dreams. Currently I am working on another YA fantasy novel. I have been hashing out the world’s rules and government, trying to come up with terms of office that I liked, and job descriptions for each. I just couldn’t wrap my brain around something I really liked and fit my story. So, I went to bed early. (I tend to be a night owl when I am working on a project.) Lo and behold I dreamt, and upon waking had the solution to my dilemma.
So, writing solution found, I began thinking about how many times I have found story ideas or solutions within my dreams. It seems that inspiration strikes me most in bed. Which means at times, not everything gets remembered or makes it to the page. I find myself frustrated that I can remember that I had a great idea but not remember the actual idea. (And yes, I keep a notebook within reach.)
Now, I find myself thinking, “Hurry up science! I need a way to transfer my dreams directly into my writing program.”
Ooo, there’s an idea!
Every time I begin a new story, I start to picture what the characters look like, as well as what personality traits they carry, etc. but it always starts with what they look like. Over the years that I have been writing, I have done different things to help out my imagination. When I was younger, I drew my characters, I sketched out floor plans of homes, and I looked through old pictures I took of pretty places in the world around me to add to my stories.
These days, with the internet being such a trove of photos and pictures to look over, I have gotten out of the habit of drawing my characters. I will spend hours combing through google images to find the faces of strangers, and sometimes celebrities, that fit my idea of who my characters are and what they look like. But I wonder if, by being less organic, I am taking something away from my stories. My drawings had flaws (lots of them). Faces were not smooth like airbrushed pictures, they were filled with crooked lines and eraser mark scars. (I’m not an artist of any real talent, I just have a love of creating) Am I doing myself a disservice? Does it change how well I understand my characters, or how realistic they seem in my stories? I’m left to wonder for now. But I think an experiment may be in order.
I’m always curious to know how other writers work, what their process is, since there are as many different ways to write, as there are genres. I’d love to hear how any of you create! Leave me a comment.