While A is away, the blog is still going to play – enjoy this guest post from Charles Yallowitz, from Legends of Windemere. Please, visit his blog and enjoy!
So, I’ve been asked to do a little guest blog for D and A. The topic is on how I interact with characters and how that alters or develops the story. Now, I believe our interactions with our characters are one of the driving forces of our writing. I’ve been ask by D and A to bring some friends to help explain this point. I decided to bring Luke Callindor and Sari from Legends of Windemere, Clyde the vampire from a future project, and Sin the adventurous thief from another future project.
Darwin Slepsnor: I’m here too!
Me: This illustrates my point. I didn’t want to bring Darwin, but he came here any way. So, where should we start?
Sin: How we affect your mood would be a good start. You are rather emotional at times. As the one this group that has to wait the longest for his series, I get to watch all of you. You people really cross his wires at some points.
Luke: We don’t cross his wires as much as we used to. It takes time and practice to be able to switch gears, especially when you’re working with multiple voices. A lot of aspiring authors seem to think it’s a natural ability to switch character mindsets, so they get frustrated when they see someone do it. The truth is that you’re seeing years of mental practice at work, which the author might not even be aware.
Me: Very true. At the beginning, I could only operate one character a day. If I tried for more then they would bleed into each other. This led to the story being altered and, ultimately, having to be rolled back.
Clyde: Like those times you tried to be me for half the day and the idiot boy-scout over there for the other half? That was disgusting. You made me act heroic and nice.
Luke: It wasn’t a picnic for me either. I suddenly appeared with so much rage and bloodlust that I was like an evil twin.
Me: Yeah. I got into a lot of trouble in those days. So, practice definitely is needed to develop your character juggling skills. There is still the issue of characters doing what they want and altering the story. Sometimes this alteration requires me going back to the drawing board with the character and her subplots. *looks at Sari*
Sari: I know, I know. I’m a bad little gypsy that gives you nothing, but grief.
Sin: At least you made it so that the rest of us can get away with things. I can already think of a few things that I would want to do differently than he has planned. We’ll discuss that when you FINALLY get around to outlining my stories. I’ve been trapped in note land for years, which is why I don’t feel as loved as I used to.
Sari: Quit whining. I thought you dropped that persona when you went back to being a confident book character and not a whining D&D character.
Clyde: He regresses like the rest of us. All characters have their original personality, which can pop up from time to time if the author isn’t careful. For some of us that’s a benefit because the old habits can fit our personality. I fall back to being totally monstrous, which makes sense and can work. Sin will need more practice and focus to leave that negative personality behind because it would damage his story.
Luke: A point in there that all authors should note is that your interactions with your characters will evolve them. That smiling hero from book one might end up being a miserable, cold hero by the end of the series. Not that I’m giving my author any ideas. Where is he anyway?
Sin: As usual, he’s letting his characters run the show. That’s part of his problem. Early on, he tried to force us to do things that he wanted us to do or people suggested. He didn’t listen and that caused conflict. An author should never be in conflict with his or her characters. The story suffers for that.
Sari: That’s something this one has trouble with. I cause issues because he puts a little twist into me then gets huffy if I go along with it. That’s why he pulls me into every conversation about runaway characters. He does it to himself.
Clyde: Where is that idiot anyway? He’s been quiet for a while.
Luke: Darwin disappeared too.
Sin: I think our author is asleep behind the couch. Darwin got him and wandered off again.
Sari: Our creator is so unprofessional.
About Charles Yallowitz
Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.