Taking the Criticism

Sorry about the lack of posts. I’ve been away. If any of you are the least bit interested in politics I highly suggest checking out IGovern. It’s a camp put on by Generation Joshua. Best week of my life. But, to the writing.

Saturday night I had a dream. I was visiting with some people I knew from before I moved. I was actually just walking up to them, there was barely a “high” when one of them turned to me and said, “You’re really had at writing characters.” I hadn’t seen these people in years, and this is the first thing they say to me. What do they know about writing, especially my writing?

It hit me like a bullet to the chest though. I gave a weak smile, “I know. That’s why I write, to get better.” Or something along those lines. It was a dream, I don’t remember every word. But even though I was really proud of myself for how I handled it throughout the rest of the dream it kept echoing through my head. And when I woke up it stuck with me. It hurt. I try so hard to make good characters. I feel like crafting characters is my best skill in writing. I know they’re not perfect, but I enjoy growing with them. I understand I’m no C.S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, Jane Austin, or Markus Zusak, but I try to be.

Now to my point. You need criticism. And you should give some criticism. But there is a huge difference between giving healthy criticism and bullying. What that girl said to me in my dream was not helpful. It only caused me pain. Now if she had taken a look at some of my work and said something along the lines of, “Your characters could use a little work.” I can take that. Yeah, it might hurt a little, but no pain no gain. But the pain of stretching and building a muscle, not tearing it.

I’m going to start a speech group this upcoming fall and I’ve been to a few get togethers already. My friend performed her speech, and at the end the kids where made to give some feedback. First they asked what we liked about her speech, then what we didn’t, then what we did. This is how we should go about life. I’m not saying give every kid a participation award. I’m saying tell someone when they’ve done good, and softly and lovingly tell them when they need to fix something.

Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me. I’m rubber, you’re glue, whatever you say bounces off me and sticks to you. These things aren’t true.

sticks and stones

So be careful with your words.

The end.

Brooke

Have fun adventuring!

Why Won’t My Characters Listen to Me?!

Because you’re doing it right! I love it when my characters stop listening to everything I tell them to do. Yes, you could say I’m a bad parent. But I’m not here to baby my characters, as much as I love to.

If you want to be a serious writer your characters need to grow personalities of their own. If you write that a mean character who hates flowers just goes and picks one for no reason then sits among a field of them, you had better have a good explanation for that or else that character is going to start complaining. It’s just not in character and it’s not something they would do. And if you’ve found their personality then they won’t let you write anything else for them.

Now I’m not crazy

Captain Jack Sparrow

and for those of you who think I might be crazy I’ll explain it in another way. if you have a character with a certain personality, and you try to write them doing something different, your common sense is going to bug you till you write something that makes sense.

Now can I go back to being a crazy writer? Thank you.

The only thing is, you can’t let them control the story. I know it sounds nice. I know it sounds easier. But if you hand the reins over to them, you’re going to have a fight to get them back. Characters are like small children, they’ll cry and fuss and make a mess of everything before they let you take away their toys. That’s why you have to stay in charge. If you give your character full control they’re going to find the perfect, gorgeous spouse, a cute home, have as many children as they like, never die, and live happily ever after. The End. That’s no story. Sure it’s happy, but if you want your story to ever be readable you need to learn how to be a leader. Writing takes leadership to another level. You have to be in charge and listen to others… I mean, fictional people. Yeah… it might sound crazy. In fact I know it sounds crazy. But it’s still necessary.

Do you have any thoughts? Please share!

Have fun adventuring!

Brooke

Meeting Your Characters

Now I want to say this right now, I do not mean to say that any advice I give is the only way you could or should do something. I am only giving tips that I think are helpful. There, now you can’t kill/sue me. 🙂

The very first thing I do when meeting a new character is daydream. I love doing this, I have always loved daydreaming ever since I was a little girl. It earned me a lot of homework when I was a public schooled kindergartner though. First I choose my character and put them in their world. And I have them interact with other characters and such. I let myself have bunches of fun with this step. I do anything I want romantic scenes, fights, crying like a Disney princess. And I try out different personalities and looks.

What do they look like? I slowly fill this in the more I daydream. What do they wear? I like to add a personal item that everyone will someday see and start fingerling over because they recognize it as one of my characters. You know like, converse, red and blue handkerchiefs and shirts, bowties, scarves, and deerstalkers.

What do they sound like? I like to also give each character a word or two that they would never ever use. Then one or two words that they use all the time. Maybe your MMC hates it when people use the word gorgeous (don’t ask me why), try making it a word your FMC uses whenever she wants to irritate him. Get creative, you’re a writer.

Then for my next step. I tend to do this when I can’t think of a scene that I want to keep, but one that I want to write anyways. It’s pretty much the same as daydreaming. I just do it on paper. It’s a good writing exercise and it’s fun. Plus there’s no pressure on you about writing well. It’s all about finding out who your characters are.

Do you have any tips or things you would like to share?

Have fun adventuring!

Brooke

My Favorite Part

Hi lovely people,

I thought for my first “real” post I would go ahead and share some of my favorite things about writing.

Alrighty, my favorite part is: Meeting new characters! To tell you the truth I love meeting new people, so meeting characters is just as good. My personality type is ENFP, and I live up to it. I love people, people are the best. This is also why I love the Doctor. He loves people, especially humans, too!!! Ahem, sorry, I almost started fangirling there. Anywho, I love discovering what makes my characters tick. I love it when they occasionally get into my head and we get into arguments. But, I also have a hard time with this. I find it difficult to discover their backstory. I have a couple good tricks for really meeting your characters, which I will share in my next blog post.

What’s your favorite part of writing? Let me know in the comments!

Have fun adventuring!

Brooke

Greetings Fellow Adventurers

Hello there!

You may be new, you may be an old friend from one of my previous blogs, but either way, Welcome! I am super happy you’re here. 🙂

I have just recently transitioned over from Blogger. Although one of my two blogs over there is still running. You can check it out at brookiespovoflife.blogspot.com. And you can see the big brother of WHAT at teenwordsofsteel.blogspot.com. I wrote it out like that for the first time, I had no idea till now that it spelled “what”. That’s going to be fun in the future. 😉

Please join me on a little adventure in the worlds of our making! We’ll meet characters. Create worlds. And follow paths to who knows where.

Writershaveadventurestoo

Don’t be shy to leave a comment! I love hearing what everyone has to say.