Tag Archives: somewhere

Get Inside The Head of Your Character

One of the toughest parts of writing is fitting yourself into the teeny mind of your characters. While you get to spend days/weeks searching through the lives of your characters, the reader may only have hours to experience the depth of a character.

What happens in your head...spills out in the paper in the mind of the writer.

So, the most daunting task is creating that character to encompass the full extent of their worth to their own story. I’m not talking about the characters that pop in and out of a scene. I’m referring to the main character: the one whose story the author is telling. As a new, determined writer to the field, I’m incredibly aware of the things I don’t know. Although they tell me to write what I do know, I find myself learning more about the things I’m writing than I knew before.

For instance, it is common knowledge that we take reality and place bits if not large portions into fiction (all of it if you’re non-fiction). It is also true that many writers find comfort in writing characters in the image of themselves. (How many books have you read of Stephen King’s that feature a writer/teacher struggling with drugs/alcohol? Too many to count!) My stories have already featured the many versions of myself I wish existed and the ones I fear could exist in parallel universes.  It may seem simple to get inside your own head to make a character from yourself. The truth is that the hardest character to get inside the head of is your own. I know finding my place in the world is one difficult task, but finding yourself in situations that may never occur are the most unpredictable to write even when you know who you are.

EMPHASIZE

What’s even more difficult for a writer is deciding how to put a character’s thoughts on the page. It may seem like a simple style decision. It could end up cluttering up your paragraphs. I  made my first big decision, in the short beginning of my career, to make all of my characters’ thoughts in italics. I haven’t planned out the specifics (whether to note the thoughts with: I wonder or she thinks) just yet. However, the path is clear for me. It makes my life so much easier to know I don’t have to worry about quotes in the right place or even phrasing if I don’t want. The best part about the decision to go TEAM ITALICS is that it is a popular style of writing thoughts for about the past 50 years. It’s safe to say with this decision made, I’ll at least have some room between my lines for agents, editors, and publishers to see the worth in my writing.

How do you write character’s thoughts? Italics? Underline? Quotes? Which way do you think is easiest for the reader? What way do you think the future of writing is going?

Make sure you check out “Somewhere: Part 3” in my Fiction-Read and React section! It’s definitely worth a read.

Happy reading/writing!

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Coming Soon to a Publisher Near You (Eventually)

To fulfill my shameless self-promotion, please direct yourself to the categories to the left of the page. After reading this, click on the Fiction-Read and React link. Then, spend a few minutes to help this aspiring writer by reading and commenting on Part 1 & 2 of my story, Somewhere. It’s about a young woman who discovers the struggle of life when she is faced with disease. She will discover things about herself and the world around her, hopefully before the disease takes over!

Hopefully, everyone will enjoy the story. I encourage as many comment negative and positive BUT all must be constructive to the writing. Please don’t say things just to be nice and DEFINITELY not to troll. I need some honest answers.

I will leave you with a quote from one of my favorite authors, Orson Scott Card, to explain how writers do what they do–

“Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.”

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