Technical writers or non fiction writers scribble to pay the bills and for the love of the analytical or the exercise of truth or deception.

Fiction authors write to illuminate their world or escape it.

Whichever kind of writer, it's all about staying alive and helping or entertaining others.

The Writing Life

Like most writers, I have a love of reading and the power of words. When I was younger, I read everything I could get my hands on, but I don’t consider myself well read. I consumed books like a starved person, so quickly I hardly knew what I had read. By some strange process of osmosis, I learned from everything I read, but I cannot give you an erudite discussion of characters, plots, or authors. I can only tell you it’s lodged some where in the core of my being and informs my writing.

In addition to reading, I’ve spent a life time writing---from that first elementary school composition to my college days when I studied French literature and wrote explications de texte. Along the way, I fell into technical writing--to put food on the table and pay bills. In the 90s, I had the good fortune to take a dialog class with Sol Stein, former owner of Stein & Day publishers in New York and a prolific author. That led to his California-based writers’ group, Chapter One. It was a rigorous, ego-bruising experience, but I was intent on learning everything I could about fiction writing. A few years ago, I also had the good fortune to study with another writer, Louella Nelson, an experienced romance writer and teacher of fiction writing. She provided a different perspective and balance to my writing.

My novel, DREAMING OF LAUGHING HAWK, a mainstream, Sixties era novel, is available on Amazon in print and ebook (also available in Canada, Europe, Japan, and Brazil). Download a free sample. If you like it, I hope you'll download the book and post a review on Amazon.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Characters

Life is like a box of chocolates--you never know what you're going to get. Remember that line from the movie, Forrest Gump? That statement applies to real life characters, such as my new granddaughter, Kylie, as well as the characters created in stories.

Kylie - One hour old
Many advise writers to shape their characters, you know, kind of like you shape human beings. Ha! Has that ever totally worked out for anyone? I've witnessed the birth of four babies in my lifetime, each under their own unique set of circumstances, however, each brought their own personality to the party on day one. Little humans aren't blank slates and neither are characters in novels. The most important thing is understanding the character you are dealing with. You can try to shape them and you may influence them for better or worse. Whether you help them to success or damage them, they hold that secret element of surprise that is uniquely them. In the end, all you can do is set the stage, give them the important directions, and turn them loose. People and characters who know that their destiny is in their own hands, fare better in life and on the page than those who have not learned this truth.

And may I add--isn't she cute? She came into the world wide-eyed and without a whimper. Who knows what kind of stories I'll have to tell about her.


- Posted by Scheherazade

9 comments:

  1. found you via the crusade-- adorable grandbaby!

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  2. Thank you. Looking forward to the crusade.

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  3. I have yet to meet little Kylie.... hopefully soon. Maybe she'll be that calming influence in our lives that we all yearn to know. Well, after busy/inquisitive/active Jake,a calming influence is a refreshing thought??? LOL!!

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  4. I'll introduce you the next time they drop by. Promise. And the little hat you crocheted is a favorite. Thanks again.

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  5. Thanks, I'm definitely looking forward to it!!

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  6. She is adorable!! Congratualtions!

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  7. She is adorable, and looks like she already is her own character, soon with stories to tell. I'm hoping to become a grandma soon. Stopping in from the crusade--I'm in your group--to say hi.

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  8. She is such a darling. Congratulations. I bet she's changed a lot already.

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