Sunday, December 12, 2010

Audience: Is Anybody Listening???

I can sit down and write down all sorts of things in a diary. I can write down how beautiful I think our Christmas Tree is, how the snow makes me feel all excited about the Christmas season, how I love my family and other people I won't mention...... However, when I write those things down, who do I have in mind for my audience? Surely no one would be reading my deepest hopes and dreams! Surely no one would be so insensitive as to invade my most personal space! Those things are written with my own view in mind. Those things are said in the presence of my own mind without thought of what other people would think. However, with a younger brother in the house, I learned very quickly that, whether you desire it or not, you WILL have an audience. So no matter how personal it is, I always write it down as if speaking to someone who may be reading it, whether it be an unwanted invader or my own daughter reading a mother's thoughts and reflections when she encountered the same struggles. But diaries are not meant to be read by other people.

So here's my point: Who is my audience in this instance? My book is my baby. My book is my opinions. My book is my thoughts. My book is my beliefs. My book contains pieces of my own heart. How is this any different from a diary? Could it be that this book is the diary of the life I never had? In some ways.... a lot of ways.... I think it is. Therefore, would that mean that my audience is only myself? Obviously not, since I plan on publishing. But since this book was written with only the thought of self expression, how can I limit it to a certain age group? I've grown a lot since I began writing this book. And what began as a harmless fairy-tale has become more of a dangerous story, filled with romance and gore. I had originally planned it to be an elementary level reading... But with the progression of my age, I find it more difficult to keep it elementary. In fact, I believe my book has become more for the teenage era than anything now, yet I'm still struggling with deciding whether or not I would like it to be for the younger age group or not. What do you think? Do you like more mature novels with dense, dangerous plots, or do you prefer the innocent novels of the Chronicles of Narnia or the first Harry Potter books? Let me know what you think! I think it's a little late to change anything about it now, but I am curious to know what you think!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Character Sketches: Variety

Once more, I sit down on a late weekend night to discuss my mad habit of writing! Somehow the evening is the only time when I can accurately compile my ideas and dilemmas into a coherent message =D Tonight I have been pondering variety of my characters. I have found that almost all of my main characters of each book have the same basic personality: Book 1- pessimistic and self-serving; Book 2- selfish and serious; Book 3- deeply troubled and often confused; Book 4- (there's two in this book) both are selfish and self-seeking, each seeking to trump the other; Book 5- independent and bitter; Book 6- also very independent (although it's a bad thing in this book) and very guarded, to the point where she does not allow herself deep relationships..... I feel like so much is based on my characters' selfish characteristics, but I never intended that. The method I hope to use in teaching a moral is by creating my characters very sinful (isn't everyone?) and one negative characteristic, which will, in most books, be corrected as the story progresses.

Here's the problem: I feel like I'm not being creative with my characters. Even though character 1 comes from our world and uses modern idioms to add humor, she still has the same characteristics as character 2, whose complexion reflects moonlight (although, since character 1 is the mother of character 2, I guess that wouldn't be so much of a problem). But character 3, who is not at all related to either of the other two, has a troubling past, much like the first two. And even though I'm thinking about having one of the two main characters of Book 4 be ambidexterous, they are both selfish with a troubling past, just like the last three. The characteristics of the character from book 5 are very enclosed to open relationships and independent, with a disturbing present situation, which arises from poor past choices. The character in Book 6 is also independent and bitter, resulting from a poor childhood.....

I feel like I'm not adding enough variety in my books, like I want them to be completely different. However, I find a comical character, who never takes anything seriously, a very unattractive main character..... (A side thought [please forgive my randomness]- maybe that could be a negative characteristic of one of my characters that could be altered by the end of the book??? That she would learn that not everything in life is to be taken so lightly???)...... As you can see, I'm having difficulty creating a main character that makes an interesting main character, while at the same time not copying everything from the last book and slapping a new title on it.

One thing I thought about, except I find it very unimaginitive, is that my series could be about solving the issues of pride and selfishness. I could purposely make each of my characters selfish and teach the value of humility and selflessness in all its different facets and features......... What do you think???? Lame? Unimaginitive? Creative? Unique? Please let me know! Even if someone else has posted exactly what you were going to say, please comment and say so! I LOVE (and I repeat: LOVE) reading all the comments! They are so-sO-So-SO helpful!!! Thank you bunches!