Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Insecure Writer’s Support Group (Oct)

The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. On this day we post about our thoughts, our doubts, and the fears we have conquered. We discuss our struggles and triumphs, and offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling.

Every post opens with a question (a blogging prompt, if you will), and this month's is:

Have you ever slipped any of your personal information into your characters, either by accident or on purpose? 

Well, duh! Seriously, we all know you cannot take characters at face value and just assume that they speak for the author. We write heroes and villains for a reason, and there would be no conflict, no tension, if every character was just a copy of the author. That said, every author puts a little of themselves into their work. It is that personal element that creates and connection and gives the story life. It is the difference between a dry, scholarly essay and a warm, personal story.

I write about what matters to me. I write about my hopes and my fears, my fantasies and my nightmares. I have never written a character who was 100% me (I am not that interesting), but there is a little bit of me in every one of my main characters. In fact, it often happens without me even realizing it, with little details surprising me on the third or fourth re-read.

People laugh at me when I tell them this, but the urban fantasy/paranormal romance novel I am polishing right now went through two complete drafts before the heroine 'told' me she was transgender in the final scene. Honestly, I never intended to write her that way, but once I realized it, I was able to look back and see all the clues I had subconsciously planted.

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