Friday, February 12, 2010

Wannabe Writers (3)

Wannabe Writers is a group for all of you out there who are un-published like me. I wanted to start a place where us future young-adult authors can come together to ask those writing questions, share our stories, and get feedback.

Where I am in the writing process: Didn't get much done, because I have a major cold. I got 1000 words and did some revising(I know I shouldn't have. I only added more content.)

Sarah's question this week: The above being said, I think I'm slowly starting to get a good grip on my own voice. But how do I make my other characters sound different? I write in 1st person and that voice belongs to my main character. But the problem is that all the other characters are starting to sound just like her. Obviously, I try to make each secondary character have a different personality, likes, dislikes, special phrases they often use, etc. But I still feel like I'm writting a story with 20 different me's here. What do I do to seperate them?

My Answer: You have to think like your character. When you are writing different characters that is your new set of mind.
Here is example one:
I hate the smiles that people give in high school. Smiles are as fake, as the “Prada” purses that girls in my school guard like they are your children or a piece of thier demented soul. No one likes anyone in high school, so why do we pretend to like each other. It is just a mask and all mask are uncovered at some point. The only person that understands this in the high school is Jordan. She helps me understand that being nice has a reason in high school. It gives you things and I don’t mean sex or drugs. It gives you this sense of power. Some sort of ability over people, while being a bitch gives you nothing, but a few dirty looks and other nasty things, for example an opened tuna can in your locker, which I never did to Kelsey Turner. She is as big of a liar as her thighs are, which can crush cities in a few steps.
She is a cynical girl that is really negative and obviously hates high school. At the same time she cares about her brother and wants to know her dad.
Then here is example two:
I find puke in the toilet again. The smell is worse then rotten milk, I can’t believe that my sister has done it again. I can only stand so much morning puke. I flush it and decided that going to the bathroom can wait. I opened the opposite door and flip on the switch. “Turn it off.” Lara screams from her bed and starts layering her pillows over her eyes to protect from the attack of lights. Hunter hops out of Lara’s bed and throws on his jeans and a blue T-shirt.
This girl is in love with her sister's boyfriend.
The point that you have to know everything that is important to your characters. Julia is example one and my current WIP and example two is Lily from my first maniscript. I also think that characters need to have bits of you, or you don't really understand them and can't protray them well. And honestly if you can't protray them well, you will SUCK at the book.


  1. Oh man, I'd love to read the 2nd of the two. See, I can already see your voice in each passage. I think I need to focus on finding mine for my Main Character and worry about the others later. (Does that make sense)

  2. When I'm sick I tend to write very depressing short stories. I have no clue why I am just in a bad mood.

  3. I agree that every character has to have bits of you so you can identify with them and shape them into realistic characters.

    Sorry you were sick! 1000 words isn't bad work for a slow week though. It happens sometimes. Happy writing!


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