“If my stories can touch you, make you laugh, forget unhappy things, or even give you that ‘good job’ feeling, then I’ll be super, super happy!”
– Kyousuke Motomi
Turn the page
I’ve been hiding,
I’ve been running,
I’ve been feeling nothing
— Issues, Sick Puppies
“It would be great to wake up in the perfect life…to wake, and be cherished and adored by everyone,” she whispered to him. “It would be as though I’d just had a bad dream, and when I woke, I’d be waking up to greet myself. It would be like a rebirth…only a rebirth into perfection and never ending happiness.”
He stared at her for a long time as she spoke, watching the corners of her lips twitch as she tried to force the smile on her face to stay in place. Then he noticed something slithering down her cheek, leaving a steam of glitter on her face. He met her glossed eyes. She was smiling at him.
“I’m ready to wake up now.”
February 24th, 2016.
Its ridiculous to limit art, as art is meant to be limitless.
Fourteen pages of character notes. Wow. I don’t know how that happened but I’m glad it did.
I always try to give as much depth and detail to my characters as I can. I believe that the more I invest in a character, the more attached I will become and that attachment is what makes that character seem more real (that’s a lot of mores). Its great because my characters go from being an idea to becoming like a close, life-long friend (until you know…that scene where they get silenced by the pen aka they die).
It’s a fun process honestly, even though I’ll admit it takes time. Despite the time it takes to do it is a lot more fun than just naming a character and throwing them into your story. A name is only a fraction of a person, there are many other things that make us who we are.
A lot of the time I like to draw pictures of my characters: the facial expressions they might make in different scenario’s, what clothing they might wear, what their hair looks like, their height, the colour of their eyes.
It can be really helpful, but of course I know that not everyone likes to draw. What I used to do on my drawings was create a list beside my character. The list usually looked like…
- Name: Bob Robert Bobbinlee
- Age: 22
- Likes: cows, cats, cookies and cake
- Dislikes: anything that doesn’t start with the letter C (is for cookie)
- Family: Mama Bobbetta, Father Bobert, Juliettabobo Boblee, Bobafett
- Friends: Cookie Monster, Elmo, Pinkie Pie and Ash Ketchum (yes I was talking to my 4 year old niece recently…any watching Pokémon)
What I’ve begun doing now is creating this same list in a table on Microsoft word.
Its pretty easy to do, you just go to insert, then click table…etc.
So now I keep my images and my charts separate, giving me more room to add written details about my characters. This is especially helpful when I have side characters. Usually I don’t know the personality of a side character. Some times I might just have some character who until named is called “Book Store Clerk.” The first thing I like to do is to draw this character out (or imagine what they might look like), then I take that image and I create a detailed character chart, similar to the list above but in chart form…and because it isn’t on the same page as my drawing I can add even more detail.
Using the same example from above:
|Name||Bob Robert Bobbinlee|
Special Features: Tattoo of the letter C
|Personality||Hot-headed, sweet-tooth, perfectionist, crazy about cats and cows, creative, incredible cook|
Siblings: Juliettabobo, Boblee and Bobafett
|Friends||Cookie Monster, Elmo, Pinkie Pie and Ash Ketchum
|Partner (or partners for them playa’s)||Cloe Ver|
|Pet||Cactus the Cat and Carver the Cow|
|Hobbies||Reading, eating and baking cookies and cake, chillin’ like a villain with his squad…I mean crew.
|Occupation/Education||Book Store Clerk
|Fears||The letter Z…because he isn’t sure if it should be Zed or Zee even though he’s Canadian. He just…doesn’t know.
|Dreams||Publish a Children’s Cook Book|
See, its that simple, and even though some of these details won’t end up being in you story, they are details that are significant to who your character really is. Once you know this much about your character they begin to take on a life of their own, and as an author I have to say that is one of my favourite things that happen while I’m writing.
Whether you like to draw or not, this is a method that I highly recommend. It’s easy to set up and once you get going it can be a lot of fun. Before you know it you’ve got fourteen pages of characters and this amazingly long chart!
Also, if you are a tech-savvy person you can even scan a drawing of your character and place the image into the appearance box on the table. I’ve never done this but I’m definitely going to give it a try. The idea just came to mind.
I hope that this post was helpful!
If you’ve never tried to do this sort of detailing with your characters I highly recommend it. Its both fun and rewarding.
If you have any different ways of detailing and developing characters (or you’ve written a post with another writing tip) feel free to share in the comment section. I’m sure, myself and many people would appreciate it!
Happy writing everyone!
I try to see like you do and my heart breaks.
I try to see like they do and my hands shake.
When I see through my own eyes I begin to judge…
When I see through his eyes everything is beautiful.
–Monday, March 23, 2015
I’ve been looking through my work for a school assignment and thought I’d share some with you.
If my characters are to die, it will be by my pen and not by being left to rot in the unfilled pages of my binder.
Whoa, I just got a whole ton of work done in the last four hours. That honestly makes me feel amazing…however now that I’m finished I don’t know what else to do.
I guess I’d better go look over my other work and see what I want to place into my portfolio for Friday. I’ve been picking and choosing…kind of going back and forth on a couple of pieces. I’m almost thinking I’ll write something new or type up some of the raw stuff I’ve got scribbled all over my note books. We shall see.
Thank God reading break is next week. I feel like today is Friday and I’m ready to just crawl into bed and watch anime, Murdoch Mysteries and Fresh Off the Boat. Too bad I don’t have cable…but my parents have cable. It’s funny, during reading week you’re supposed to read and get lots of work done but every time my friends and I come back we’re all like, “Oh gosh I have so much homework to do. I did absolutely nothing over the break!” Not this time. This time I’m going to buckle down and read the novels I’ve been assigned for the first (maybe even second) week back and I’m going to do a lot of writing…try and experiment with different types of poetry like I used to do back in high school. I am going to do stuff other than catch up on T.V., sleep and eat delicious home cooked meals. I’m also going to exercise because…I keep trying to go to the gym but then I make up excuses. For example, “It’s too late. I’m too full. Too crowded today. I just want to sleep.” anyone else relate?
Feels good to get work done. It feels good to progress…also feels good to relax.
Reading week, I’m coming for you buddy.
Hello everyone, I am still alive. I was feeling under the weather. Got a bug or something…I don’t really know what was up with me? I’m feeling much better now. Still feeling the exhaustion but at least I don’t have a fever anymore.
I realized that it really sucks to be an adult because no one is there to nurse you back to health. If you’re sick, then all your friends tend to be sick at the same time and they’re all busy watching Netflix and drinking soup.
I feel like I’m the only person who doesn’t watch Netflix. Someone needs to explain to me why it’s so glorious. What can I watch there that I can’t watch online somewhere?
I guess it would reduce the risk of viruses but what if Netflix got hacked and then everyone’s televisions, phones and computers were effected! Then they turned into evil machines of evil….
What…? Ha…evil machines of evil. That’s right, I writes bookseses…es…es?
My brain is still catching up with me. I don’t know what’s been going on in the last couple of weeks. Everything kind of just happened.
Hope everyone is feeling healthy and staying warm and cozy. Have a glorious weekend!
I will do my best to update once a week as usual. I was working on a huge homework assignment while I was all feverish and…wheezing. Still got another one to get done for this coming week. Lucky me! Yah….school. Great.
I’m sure I’ll survive.
P.S I do not actually think that Netflix is trying to enslave humanity. It’s just a theory. I do not need to be admitted into an institution. I apologize for that train of thought.