Thursday, November 15, 2012

Skillful Liars (Day 15)

Today is midway through nano, and I spent the day not writing.  Okay, I got some words done, just not as many as I was hoping for.  Apparently, the day before a trip is typically crammed full of last minute errands.  Who know.  Okay, probably everyone, except for me, because I've never really been on a trip like this one.

Anyway, while I was running around not writing today, I started thinking about my story (because when I'm not writing my story, I'm generally talking about it or thinking about it, or really doing something that could somehow be related back to writing.)

So, while I was thinking about my story (and talking about it to my friend) I couldn't help but realize just how skillful writers are.  Writers are the best liars out there!

Now, this might not be true face to face.  I know how to tell a lie, but I've seen some writers who are absolutely terrible at it.  But on the page, that is where the talent really shines through.  I mean, we don't write stories, we sell worlds.

We have to take something that we've come up with and create a world that the reader knows and loves and never wants to leave.  We have to bring it to life for them, and in order to do that, we have to make it real to ourselves.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again.  If there's one thing writers are really good at, it's lying to themselves.

Today I was so far in to my world that I was talking about the fashion.  The fashion!  I barely care about that in our world, but I was describing it with absolute glee.  (In case you're wondering, picture a mixture of modern and late eighteenth century clothing.  I have character that matches a tight bodice, corset included with capris and a hairstyle with feathers sticking out of it.  Just saying.)

Because the fashion is so relevant to how everything works in this world, I had to figure it out, and I had to care.  I had to make the world real to myself so that I can sell it to my readers.  That's just the way writers work.

There's just one problem with it.  You see, when a writer sells a world to themselves, sometimes that world becomes an obsession.  And I'm not being sarcastic.  I think about my books far more often than I probably should.  I know a few things that are going to be happening in the third book of one of my series, and I'm not even done the editing on the first book.

The characters become so real, when I talk about them to other people (who aren't my friends and therefore don't know who they are) they assume that I'm talking about some of my friends.  It gets really awkward when I start to mention things like how he or she is a werewolf, or then the Lady in th fountain showed up.

Now, I say 'problem' but the truth is, I think it's great that we have the ability to immerse ourselves in our writing so much.  We get to live in this world for a while as we try to portray it on the screen.  We get to watch these scenes that we've had running through our heads for who knows how long come to life on the page.  And then we get to watch our readers fall in love with it to.  In my opinion, there's nothing better.

How involved do you get in your stories? Do you have someone who knows your characters as well as you do?

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Daily Word Count: 5,500
Total Word Count: 123,089

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