Thursday, December 20, 2012 | By: Megan Held

Help? Just More Insults Towards Characters and Difficulty Writing.

I have blogged about writers attacking others before. Once again, I have found more of this happening. Some writers have voiced their opinion on this matter. Instead of copying and pasting what is being said, I am going to do a spin-off of what was asked and answer it in a better manner.

1. Character Development

One writer asked for some help in regards to their main character. The writer provided the name and wanted to get some feelers for what people thought of when hearing the name.

This s the constant response:

“Character's come from the author, and really needs to be the author's job to create them. As a wise woman once told me, writing is a solitary endeavour for a reason. The more people get their fingers into the pudding, the more it'll be messed up.”

I am not going to lie, sometimes I have problems with my characters. Most are based off a bunch of my friends and acquaintances, but mashed together. Putting out feelers helps me make sure my character is right for my book or for the name.

Yes, they are created by the author, but if your future readers cannot imagine them then there is no point of writing that person. Instead of saying make them whomever you want, one should ask what is already known to see if you can help.

I start with a basic character and develop them as they go. Characters are important to my novels, but I want them to grow with me as I write. My advice then is:

  • start with a basic idea.
  • look to your close friends for advice, traits, behaviours and looks.
  • names can always wait unless the name is essential to the story.
  • go with your gut.
  • remember, how you envision them is not always how readers do.
  • let your character grow and show you who they are.

Hope that helps with that. My advice is from my own experience and may not work for all.

 

2. Writers’ Block/Difficulty Writing

Every writer has this problem. If they  don’t they are lying. For once, I can say that I am happy how this thread turned out on the page. The original person said they were having a hard time writing because they edited as they wrote.

I always tell people that do that to stop. Write the entire story in one shot, take a break and then go through to edit it as many times as you want. You cannot edit it before you even know the entire story/plot.

One person’s responses that started an attack against them:

“I find it interesting that you say it went well, but only wrote two pages. I'm not sure what to tell you -- you either have the desire or you don't. Writing should be enjoyable. If it's not enjoyable for you, maybe you shouldn't do it.”

Some days I have issues writing two pages because writing seems so hard, other times I can write a lot. It happens. People have lives and cannot always write. Telling someone not to write is the worst thing to do to a person.

People say don’t push your writing, but at times you will need to do that in order to regain interest. How people gave advice made me smile. By far, this is the nicest response and one I can support because I agree 100% with it:

“But the good news is that in the case of writing, practice makes perfect. The more you do it, the better you get. And that's kind of a cliché line that people tend to throw out about a lot of hobbies and it isn't always true. But you definitely get better the more you do it. Again, I look back at the previous things I've done and I can note a clear line of improvement from work to work.”

Most of my work is crap, and I know that because I read it and laugh. I have gotten better, and that is from practice. To this person, it is their first novel. To those that loose interest or have issues, it is a learning curve. My advice when it comes to writing the first novel:

  • write first, edit second.
  • write as much as you can, when you can.
  • if struggling wait it out. If it has been a long time (more than 3 days) sit down and try to write a paragraph or two.
  • think about your novel whenever you can. This helps keep your interest.
  • writing will be frustrating, sad, happy, pretty much any emotion you can think of, but that doesn’t mean to stop.
  • lastly, NEVER stop writing. You will never know if you like it until you have finished a novel. If someone tells you to stop, laugh at them and keep writing.

Sorry about my rant again. I find it hard to check this forum site without finding some problems with people. Hope this helps others.

If any writer has advice, comment away so other writers can read about how you handle these situations and what other viewpoint can be offered.

Back to typing up ‘Control Me’. Over 45, 000 words and counting!

Friday, December 7, 2012 | By: Megan Held

Control Me Preview

I haven’t had much happen in my life in almost a month. I have been busy working, Christmas shopping and preparing to go to two football games. One game involves me dying my hair bright green and blue, and painting my face. Will post some of those pictures.

Instead of ranting I figured I would post some of the book I am working on typing up, Control Me. Be warned, this is the typing up of the rough draft, I haven’t gone through to edit or make sense out of most of the novel.

Hope some people enjoy it, this is one of my favourite parts that I have typed up so far.

Cpt. Anderson saluted his superiors before he guided me to the chair next to where he sat down. His face was serious and he stayed quiet. Technically, he was not forced to attend this meeting, but he chose to for my sake or the sake of his superiors for he was unknowledgeable with how much power I acquire.

When I sat down I glanced at each officer before looking back at Cpt. Anderson. No one looked pleased to be here.

“Well, Miss Clemmons have you been briefed as to why we asked to meet with you?” the officer directly across from me said. His tone made me feel like I was less intelligent than them.

“Yes, I have,” I replied. For first introductions, this was the worst. It felt like each of the six officers were trying to see through me

“before we proceed with making a decision and meriting your proof, we need to see evidence.”

What type of evidence? I said to each of the people’s minds in the room. I had enough of their attitude.

“I’m sorry. What did you just say? The officer sitting beside me said.

Cpt. Anderson tried not to laugh. Since yesterday he had adjusted to me talking to him through his mind.

I asked you gentlemen, how you would like me to prove my abilities.

“Your lips are not moving,” the officer sitting at the head of the table stated.

I know. I am not using my mouth to speak. For being superiors they lacked imagination and intelligence towards something other than literature and facts.

“But, how?”

Cpt. Anderson put his left hand over his mouth to help disguise and resist laughing more. He felt my frustration that I was feeling because he was sitting directly next to me.

I am speaking to you through your mind. I can say anything to you this way.

All six officers stared at me in awe and confusion.

“Nope. I don’t believe you,” the officer that addressed me first said.

I sighed. It’s true. It would be best if you realized it now before I show you the next part. I assure you it will not be pleasant for you. Not that I was complaining about potentially causing harm to them. This was what I feared: disbelief. All I wanted to do was scream out of frustration. If I became angry it would spread to everyone. I had not properly worked on my powers to handle too many people, or designate each person a different reaction.

“Was that a threat?”

Yes, it was. I do not like when people do not believe me.

“And what could you possibly do to make that threat a reality Miss Clemmons?”

Glancing over at Cpt. Anderson I smiled. “Sad or angry?” I said to Cpt. Anderson.

“Sad, I guess,” Cpt. Anderson responded. Although, it was humorous to think of the men in charge of him getting angry for no reason, sadness was more of a proof of my abilities.

“Excuse me Cpt. Anderson and Miss Clemmons, what are you two discussing?” the officer beside me said.

You will see. I focused my eyes on the six of them and began to send out the emotion of extreme sadness. My body did not react as I pushed the feeling onto them. If I was using my ability correctly, Cpt. Anderson was not to be affected by the feeling.

Each officer’s eyes began to tear up before they started to cry.

Believe me now?

“How? Why? I feel so sad right now,” the officer across from me said. His eyes were red and puffy from crying.

I am making you feel sad. It’s a way to prove to you my abilities.

“Enough! I can say that we believe you now.” He wiped his cheeks with the back of his left hand. His cheeks were damp from tears he did not know why they were shed.

Within seconds I stopped sending them the feeling of sadness. My point was proven my abilities existed.

“Do you know how much danger you are in with a third of the countries trying to find you?”

“As you have seen and experienced, I am more dangerous than any of them,” I said. Instead of speaking to them through their minds I opted to speak aloud. “Emotions are only one aspect of what I can control.”

“You are a commodity that people will do anything to get a hold of. As you have analyzed, people have ideas with the use of you.”

It felt like I was to be disposed of like I was a threat to the country and world. Fear set in as I saw their faces. It was a mixture of concern, anger and no emotion. This was business, and I was their business. “So, what am I to do?” as the officers discussed me, I sat in silence and waited for a response. No other option but waiting existed for me.

After seven minutes all the officers returned their attention to me. “For now you are to remain here and monitor any new messages received from these countries involved. You no longer need to look at previous documents,” the officer across from me told me. “You will be supervised and escorted at all times. You are to keep your abilities a secret. Only the people in this room are permitted to have knowledge of your abilities and the full extent of them.”

What he told me was not difficult. The supervising and escorting aspect bothered me though. “Anything else?” The tone of annoyance was strong in my voice and I didn’t bother to try and hide it.

“You are to not use your abilities.”

That statement bothered me the most. My abilities were a part of me. There was no switch to turn them on and off. “I’m sorry, but that one I will not agree with.”

“You have no say, we are telling you that you are not allowed to use them.”

“I do have a say.” I clenched my hands into fists to try to suppress my anger.

Cpt. Anderson put his left hand on my right forearm. He gave my forearm a light squeeze. “Sirs, you cannot ask her to not use what is a part of her,” he said to his superiors in defense of me. He chose to remain silent throughout the meeting, but now he intervened for my sake. The majority of the rules were able to be respected. The last one was not.

“Did we ask for your opinion for Cpt. Anderson?” the officer across from me said. He was displeased with Cpt. Anderson for speaking out.

“No, sir, you did not. You are making a terrible decision assuming Miss Clemmons will agree to the rules.” Cpt. Anderson knew that I was able to leave at anytime, and then they would be unable to control me.

“No offence, gentlemen, but if you want me to stay then I get to deal with all the rules except for the last one. I had the decency and respect to inform you of my abilities. I could have let the people try to find me and invade Canada,” I said. What I said was the truth. How they came to have knowledge of my abilities was from me informing Cpt. Anderson. They were not in charge, I was.

“We will have to discuss this,” the officer beside me said.

“You have till lunch. If you do not agree to my use of abilities I plant to pack, leave and return home this afternoon.”

“Another threat?”

“No. As you should have realized by now I do not threaten. I warn before I act.”

“We will notify Cpt. Anderson of our decision at 1100. Dismissed.”

Cpt. Anderson saluted as he led me out of the room and down to his office. Once we were out of earshot of his superiors he looked at me. “Well played, Janet,” he said. It sounded like congratulation. As we entered the stairwell he held the door open for me.

“I did my best. They were difficult to convince.” I walked down the stairs beside Cpt. Anderson without him the meeting may not have gone as well. In my defence he stood-up for me, not wanting me to be taken advantage of. Thank you for helping me in the meeting. It was nice having support. Support was not a concept I embraced often.

He smiled, knowing I was able to decipher what it was about. Once we reached his officer’s floor he stopped me outside the entrance. “Even if they told you that you were not allowed to use your abilities, would you have listened?”

“No.” I smiled. My rebellious nature made me unsuitable for the army. Taking orders was difficult for me.

“Come, we’ll keep you occupied as we wait for the decision.” He held open the door for me before he began to lead me to his office. Even after several days of me working in the building, the people in uniform still gave me awkward looks. Most of them he caught and gave a look back. Civilian workers were not uncommon, but it was rare to see a new one without a connection to a person already working on base.

 

Keep writing everyone! Never give up on it!