Monday, October 18, 2021

Emotional Depth

I’ve been trying to show emotional depth through dialogue for my protagonist and a secondary character who are crucial to the success of finding the protagonist’s kidnapped girlfriend. An author friend suggested that I think about the characters speaking to me and how I'd like that to sound.

I hadn’t thought about creating dialogue from that perspective. I try to look at the world through my main character’s ‘eyes,’ but when I tried to put myself in his ‘head’ and ‘heart,’ all I found was empty space. It's my job as a writer to fill those voids.

A basic tenet of writing is “know your characters.” I flunked that part. Back to the drawing board for more character development.

Update: I was working on a scene to add more emotion, and I guess I succeeded. My eyes filled with tears, and I sniffled. My dog came over to offer comfort.

Friday, October 1, 2021

Writer’s High

As a writer, you learn what times and conditions are most productive for your writing. I write best in the morning, before I distract my mind with emails, chores, and daily life.

I was thinking about my work-in-progress before I fell asleep, and it was on my mind when I woke in the morning. I scribbled seven pages on how to escalate the conflict for my protagonist’s love interest who escaped her kidnapper but is lost in the forest.

She hears a chainsaw, and she’s following the sound to where she’ll find people and rescue—but a ravine is between her and them. She’s injured and physically unable to climb down, across, and back up the other side, so she must find another way. I wrote such a high energy, physically active scene that I sprained my wrist.*

I’m on a writer’s “high” even though the pages are on top of a stack of papers that have yet to be typed into the manuscript.

(Dirty little secrets… After my first and second books were published, there were still scribbled pages of notes that hadn’t been typed up. *The sore wrist is really from yesterday’s heavy yardwork.)