Development & Growth

03/31/2011 at 9:44 pm (Writing) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Not all that long ago, my critique group ripped apart…I mean gave some nice, helpful suggestions for chapters 7 and 8 of my novel.  The main suggestion that I took away from the whole thing was that my main character should have undergone more character growth and development by that point.  So I went home afterwards, shed a few tears over the fact that my novel is not perfect, YET, then I sat down and started thinking about character growth in other stories I’ve read and loved, and how I should show it in my novel.

One of the books I’ve read that I feel has some good character development is “Alanna: the First Adventure” by Tamora Pierce.  In this book, Alanna has to develop confidence in her abilities as a warrior, and face off with the bully who torments her throughout most of the beginning of it.  A little later in the book, she has to face her fear of her own magic in order to save a friend.

It doesn’t sound too complicated until I start thinking about how I should do something similar in my novel.  Also, on a side note, if you have not read the Alanna series (“Lioness Quartet”) you are really missing out.  I loved those books along with her “Wild Magic” books as I know I’ve mentioned before.

Now for character growth in my book, I would say that the biggest fault that my main character has is her inability to get close to people and develop real relationships.  Sure she gets along with everyone all right, but there’s no one she would actually call a friend.  So, I guess the easiest way to show growth is maybe have her admit to having developing feelings for the guy she works for.

Another option would be to give her some sort of fear or weakness to overcome towards the beginning of my novel, but I’m not sure I really want to go and do that since I like my main character the way she is and that may take a whole lot more reworking than is probably necessary.  I might take another look at my beginning later to see what faults she has to work with though, but I do think having her develop a real relationship with someone would be the way to go.  Has anyone else run into this problem while working on their novels too?

Just a quick side note to all my potential readers, I did not actually cry after my critique…ninja assassins don’t cry.  And another note, my critique group is really great, and I appreciate all the help and advise they have given me.

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Inspiration

03/30/2011 at 1:39 am (Writing) (, , , , )

I’m sure if you’ve stumbled across my new blog, that you have read some sort of book at some point that had totally blown you away, and made you go “gee, I want to write like that!”

Maybe that book had some stellar characters like in Patricia Wrede’s “Mairelon the Magician,” or maybe that book had developed a world that you could completely see yourself living in like Harry Potter, or maybe the book was just a fantastic read in every sense of the word, like in Elizabeth Bunce’s “Starcrossed,” (granted, both “Mairelon the Magician” and Harry Potter are fantastic reads in every sense of the word too) it doesn’t matter though, what matters is that you were inspired to write!

I’ve read tons of great books through out my life, and some of them I’ve even read obsessively over and over again.  But if I had to name one author that inspired me to write, that author would have to be Tamora Pierce.  It was after reading her “Lioness Quartet” and “Wild Magic” series’ that I wanted to try and create a world of my own.

Granted, when I first started writing stories I just did it to pass the time and entertain myself.  I never imagined that I’d someday be taking writing as seriously as I do my drawing.  But now that I do, I’m thankful for all the books that took me to far off lands, on adventures, and I know that the experiences are what are helping to inspire me to write today.

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