Is there a right or wrong way to say something? Of course. But, not everyone will like what you say. You can’t please everyone. There will always be somebody who doesn’t like what you wrote. Maybe you wrote something regarding a certain topic and Person A didn’t agree with your ideas. Spoiler alert, here again, not everyone will agree with you. Let’s say Person A sends you a message saying you should have said “this” or “that”. And maybe Person A points out where you could go to get more information that would prove what you wrote was wrong. Then they tell you that maybe you need to correct what you wrote accordingly.
Uh, no. If you feel strongly about your words, stick with them. If it’s fact filled nonfiction, and your research is documented correctly, stick with your stance. Your job is not to please everybody who reads your writing. Your job is to write. Stick to your words.
There will be times when you want to respond back to someone who “stabs” your writing in the “heart”. It will make you angry/irritated. But, before you respond back to them, take a deep breath. Let it out slow and take five minutes to think of an appropriate response. Then, tactfully, respond to them (if you choose to).
Have you ever finished reading a book of fiction and were disappointed it ended? And was part of that disappointment because you were going to miss the characters? You actually liked the characters so much you didn’t want the story to end. You enjoyed your time with them. Why do you think you liked them so much?
The answer is very simple. The author did a fantastic job creating them. But how were they able to be that effective in their creation? It lies in the attention to detail. It goes beyond physical appearance. Go deep within your characters, their minds: how they think, feel, react to certain things, mannerisms. Study other people around you and make notes in a journal. What do you like and dislike about them? Make a list of habits and choose some for your character to have.
Also, consistency is a huge key to creating believable characters. Don’t have them be unafraid of spiders in one chapter and afraid of them in the next. Don’t give them one habit in the first part of the book and it not be their habit in another part of the book. That will only serve to frustrate the reader, and they’ll put the book/story down.
You won’t know if your readers will like your characters or not, but if you do your job and pay attention to detail, the chances of them having such an impact on the reader will go up.
If you are an author, whether you are experienced or not, sometimes talking to someone you trust (implicitly) about your story ideas can help you tremendously. I know that’s very simple advice, and maybe you already knew that. But it’s a good reminder. I never would have come up with the story I did for my first book had I not confided in my creative writing professor. Sometimes we need that nudge. So, if you are on the fence about a piece of writing you are working on, hash it out with a trusted friend.
How do you choose names for your characters? Do you merely assign them a name without giving much thought to it? Do you use a process? There are quite a few things one can do to assign names to their characters. I’ve used a baby names book. Looking names lists online works too. If your character is of another culture or country whose names are different than those used in your own, some baby names books have lists of common names used in different countries.
In one of my pieces of writing I used characters of 4 real life people. I asked them permission first. Please, if you are ever going to do this, ask that person or persons permission to use them in your book/story. When I was renaming these 4 people for my story, I tried to choose names that fit their personalities. Trust me, this wasn’t as easy as it may have appeared to be. One gentleman helped me with that, so that one was easy enough to put a name to. The other three took some thinking. I got my baby names book out and browsed male names. I thought of each person individually and then tried out a name on them. I went through several before settling on some that worked well and matched each of their personalities. There was only one problem. One of the guys I couldn’t think of a name for. At all. So I, for the time being, left his name alone and used his real name until I could think of one that suited him. FINALLY, after writing 25 chapters, I thought of the perfect name for him. Of course, I had to go back and change his name throughout the manuscript, but it was worth the wait.
Most often you’re not going to use real people. But the same thing still rings true. The people you make up will have personalities and you will have to choose a name that fits that personality. Also, if you are going to assign a name to a character that sounds funny or out of place, you might want to explain why they were given that name by making that part of your story. For example, if you give one of your female characters the name of Spunky Dickson (a funny name for a female anyway), have the character tell why her parents named her that. Maybe the whole story centers around that. Maybe Spunky is a nickname.
Have fun choosing names for your characters. Don’t make it a chore. Work with it and mold it into your story.
Talk is words, nothingness pushed forth, ears hear sound, but words not profound. A rain so dull, no growth it brings from what you are saying as I sit and start praying. Joy I could feel, if all remained quiet, but droning of sound continued as underground. A hand pushed up, your words to stop, and silence ensued as your words ran askew.
Your pen (or keyboard) is your sword, and the words are the blood that’s shed as a result of wielding your words onto the page. Words have impact. It doesn’t matter what that impact is. Whether they create horror, harshness, love, peace, or fear; they have impact. You are the person in charge of creating that impact. So what kind of thrust to you want to use to create that impact?
You can make something everyday appear abnormal, or you could choose something abnormal or bazaar to appear normal or everyday. It’s all in the words you choose. How you wield your words is up to you. It’s your story, your voice, your personality. Write the words you want to write the way YOU want to write them.
Pants, hung low, Gray, dusty, old hair, in a frizz, Faded drooping, sunken blue eyes, A frown so downward cast, Where is my home? I do not know, I do not care, I am so alone. But do I care? I do not know, Here in my cardboard box I sit in drunken moan. My tears, stain my face, People look at me in disgrace. Sadness, consumes me, Surrounds me, covers me. Slowly, I look up, I see the riches of allies, The food of homeless kings, The rot of days gone by, Dwelling close, The stench so wry. What do I do? I do not know, I do not care, I am so alone. But do I care? I do not know, Here in my card board box My mind, it runs to go.
Keeping at it is the key. No matter what you are doing, continuing to do that which you are doing is how you eventually reach your goal/dream. The operative word here is eventually. Sometimes achievements can happen quickly. I’m not saying they don’t. It’s just that most often it takes time. It also depends on what you are doing. Writing a book takes time anyway, but it begins to take less time when you do it all the time. The process becomes easier and the creative flow continues. BUT, for writing to get easier and faster, you MUST persist and continue on. No matter what life throws at you, no matter how hard it gets at various times, push through it.
NEVER GIVE UP. I believe in you. Others believe in you. YOU believe in you too.