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30 days on writing: Entry #9: Schenectady: The act of creation - The Annals of Young Geoffrey: Hope brings a turtle [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Young Geoffrey

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30 days on writing: Entry #9: Schenectady: The act of creation [Jul. 30th, 2010|09:49 am]
Young Geoffrey
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More memeage: In this edition, Young Geoffrey discusses the act(s) of creation.

0. Explain yourself! In which Young Geoffrey explains the meme and his reasons for exploring it.

1. Tell us about your favorite writing project/universe that you've worked with and why.

2. How many characters do you have? Do you prefer males or females

3. How do you come up with names, for characters (and for places if you're writing about fictional places)?

4. Tell us about one of your first stories/characters!

5. By age, who is your youngest character? Oldest? How about "youngest" and "oldest" in terms of when you created them?

6. Where are you most comfortable writing? At what time of day? Computer or good ol' pen and paper?

7. Do you listen to music while you write? What kind? Are there any songs you like to relate/apply to your characters?

8. What's your favorite genre to write? To read?

10. What are some really weird situations your characters have been in? Everything from serious canon scenes to meme questions counts!

11. Who is your favorite character to write? Least favorite?

12. In what story did you feel you did the best job of worldbuilding? Any side-notes on it you'd like to share?

13. What's your favorite culture to write, fictional or not?

14. How do you map out locations, if needed? Do you have any to show us?

15. Midway question! Tell us about a writer you admire, whether professional or not!

16. Do you write romantic relationships? How do you do with those, and how "far" are you willing to go in your writing? ;)

17. Favorite protagonist and why!

18. Favorite antagonist and why!

19. Favorite minor that decided to shove himself into the spotlight and why!

20. What are your favorite character interactions to write?

21. Do any of your characters have children? How well do you write them?

22. Tell us about one scene between your characters that you've never written or told anyone about before! Serious or not.

23. How long does it usually take you to complete an entire story — from planning to writing to posting (if you post your work)?

24. How willing are you to kill your characters if the plot so demands it? What's the most interesting way you've killed someone?

25. Do any of your characters have pets? Tell us about them.

26. Let's talk art! Do you draw your characters? Do others draw them? Pick one of your OCs and post your favorite picture of him!

27. Along similar lines, do appearances play a big role in your stories? Tell us about them, or if not, how you go about designing your characters.

28. Have you ever written a character with physical or mental disabilities? Describe them, and if there's nothing major to speak of, tell us a few smaller ones.

29. How often do you think about writing? Ever come across something IRL that reminds you of your story/characters?

30. Final question! Tag someone! And tell us what you like about that person as a writer and/or about one of his/her characters!

9. How do you get ideas for your characters? Describe the process of creating them.

Character creation usually comes in two forms for me, and is greatly dependent on the where the story they're in will be coming from. In other words, my ideas for stories generally come in one of two flavours: situations or characters.

Situations are more common and, in that case, they often come with characters attached, particularly if I'm inspired by either a real-world (read: authobiographical) situation or a wish-fulfillment situation (think: smut).

Basically, characters and plots are, for me, most often developed intuitively. A situation occurs to me and I begin to think about what sort of person — someone I know, someone I've heard of, someone entirely made-up? — might be involved in it.

Or, and maybe more interestingly, I will deliberately set out to write a certain kind of piece and then struggle to find a suitable character for it.

Most recently, with The Jewel of Eternity, I was inspired by my then 15-or-so year-old neice's enthusiasm for the revival of Doctor Who. Simply put, I wanted to write and adventure story along similar lines, something that would please my neice.

Said something, I determined, would be even better with a female protagonist, and so I began to write, with only the vaguest idea of who that heroine might actually be.

If I remember rightly, she was first physically-based on a girl on whom I had had a mad, unrequited crush while I was in high school. But the character never seemed right, she never came to life; she was only a cypher with a physical description, being put through the paces of a generic fantasy novel.

In short, the lack of a fully-realized character meant the novel was going to suck.

I don't remember when I realized that my heroine's father was a Nigerian immigrant, and that she was a dark-skinned half-black girl, but when I did everything else fell into place (well, much else; if everything else had fallen into place, I rather imagine the second draft wouldn't be moldering away in a drawer somewhere. I need to pull it out and finish the god damned thing — which is the sort of feeling I was hoping this exercise would give me). I realized her mother had died very young, that she had been raised by a loving but stern father and had fought hard for her indendence from him. She was a loner and a bit of a nerd, but capable of socializing and even becoming good at the latter when the novel opened.

She became a person in my writer's eye and that made a great deal of difference not just to her but to the plot, somehow.

Which, I realize, is mostly a very long-winded way of answering Question 9 by saying "I don't know, most of the process of creation is sub-conscious."

But that seems to be what happens in my case.

This entry was originally posted at http://ed-rex.dreamwidth.org/12905.html. Comment there using OpenID, or here as per normal.
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