I’m not good at keep to my self-imposed deadlines. I often plan in my head about what to do next and by when. It’s a bit different from having competition deadlines or submission deadlines. These you cannot change. At the moment I have three projects on the go and I often find my mind is jumping from one things to the other. I really want to complete them all at the same time. My problem is I want to do my very best, to take my work to a higher standard, to give them each my all.

Characters aren’t always what they seem.
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As a writer we are all very critical of our own work, and I worry that it just not good enough that I can do better. So it’s difficult for me to just let go. I don’t know how it is for you. We all write in different ways. I start with an idea and write an opening. Of course, you need to get your main character down as soon as possible. The reader needs to stand in someone’s else shoes to connect with the story you’re telling.

I’m never sure who my main character is going to be. My first line normally gives me their voice. Once I hear it then my character develops from there as my story unfolds. I’m not one for writing a character sheet where you’re suppose to write everything about them. How many friends do you have that you know everything about them?

James Ravencroft, the main character, from my Stone Angels novel started life as a walk on part in a short story. The short story had already developed his character by the way two other people reacted to him. He’s a bit like Marmite. Either you fall for his charms or he makes your skin crawl.
I enjoy playing with the idea that things are not always what they seem, and people aren’t either. Most serial killers don’t come from poor or uneducated backgrounds. You can’t point the finger at individuals and say for sure which one will become killer. If you were to talk to people after the event most will say, ‘Well, there was always something odd about them etc, etc.’

The people we image to be criminals are not.
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If that had been the case why wasn’t it picked up before too many victims had lost their lives. No, there isn’t a tick list we can use before a crime is committed, only after someone or a few people have suffered and the police have uncovered the deed can a criminal profiler give the police some idea of the sort of the person they need to look for.

This is the reason I don’t create a check list of who my main character is. Once I have their voice I normally start by giving them a name. I agree my main characters tend to be a bit like me middle-class white, but that might be my upbringing. Though, you don’t know that for sure, do you?

Character building is a fun part of writing, but I really enjoyed editing. Once I find the beating heart of my story, I’m normally on the right track to being satisfied with the project. This is where I have problems with self-imposed deadlines because I can’t say for sure I’ll have it finished by a certain date. I must allow my characters to tell me everything they are willing too while they are uncovering things for themselves as they move through the storyline.

Going back to James Ravencroft and Stone Angels, I was constantly add in new information about him as the book developed. These were things I would never have thought of if I had just wrote a check list about him. Of course, if you were to look on my computer now, you will find a list of things about James which I wrote down as I discovered them.

Lost in Space
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Right, I shall get back to the story I’m working on. At the moment I’m lost in space with Josh Fulton. He has got himself into a real pickle. His spacecraft is in need of maintenance but when he had the opportunity to fix it, he gambled the money instead. Ahh, you see things are not always what you see, and Josh is about to find that out too.

Have a great day, and chat again soon.

11 Comments

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. So James was won you with his charms? I look forward to reading your final thoughts on him. ❤️Hugs❤️

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  1. Wonderful post. I know you may be struggling with your character, right now, Paula, but I know for sure you will soon be back on track. I really do appreciate you sharing with us your writing process and concerns as your novel moves along. It’s a real learning experience for me!! Thank you for that 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m very comfortable writing from a man point of view. I’m not sure why. I think it because I always wanted the freedom my brother had, so now I have more freedom than I could imagine.😉

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  2. Like you, Paula, I don’t know everything about my characters when I start writing. Ideas about them pop up just when I least expect it. That’s what I enjoy about constructing stories, I generally know where I want to end up, it’s just the route that is a mystery until my characters tell me!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m certainly enjoying your book the Bachelor’s Pledge. You too write a convincing male point of view. Plenty of action and excitement in the book. I think that’s what is so enjoyable about writing because we don’t know everything. This is why writers find it hard to answer that question every newbie writer want to know ‘where do you get your ideas from?’
      The answer is 🤷‍♀️ I have no idea until my characters tell me😂

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