Dramaquill's All Things Writing

February 26, 2013

Composing is writing too

I have been feeling uptight about not working on my second suspense novel lately. We all go through those phases where our projects get shelved due to other things taking up our time.

Recently I even had to skip my turn at subbing to my critique group (and I hate missing my turn).

Today, as I sat at my keyboard working on lyrics to the final original song for my murder/mystery, I realized that I was still writing. I was just writing words to a song instead of words in a chapter. Creating is creating – writing is writing

What are you writing today?

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September 18, 2012

Teaching Drama inspired me to get back to writing

As the owner of a performing arts studio, my schedule becomes almost overwhelming from late August through mid September.  It’s both exhilarating and exhausting.

I’ve now entered the phase where all of my classes have begun and I’m re-connecting with former students as well as meeting new ones.  It’s an exciting time at my studio.

Saturday was the first day of classes and as it happens, all of our drama programs are on Saturday.

First up was the 6-10 year old group.  As we all played a fun drama game to learn each other’s names, I saw snippets of creativity begin to emerge.  Even the shy children were eager to say and do something that would make everyone remember them.  The collective energy in the drama room produced an encouraging atmosphere where the students felt themselves trying things outside of their comfort zones and enjoying it.

The second group consisted of the 11-17 year old crowd.  This diverse group ranged from kids with plenty of creative experience to others with absolutely none.  Interestingly enough, as we worked on a variety of group and individual activities, this group definitely had a noticeable split between the “up for anything” creative types and the “shy and guarded” individuals, however, by the end of the class, the split had weakened considerably.

Finally, the last class, a large group of students ages 9-18 entered the studio.  Many of these kids have taken programs with us before, however there was also a handful of newcomers.  One might think that such a mix of ages would result in chaos, but the opposite took place.  Different levels of creativity took shape as we integrated ages and abilities, familiar and unfamiliar.  The creative energy became infectious during the ninety minute session.

You’re probably all wondering what any of this has to do with writing.

Writing alone is great when your creativity flows and the words just spew out of you and on to the page.  But as we all know, there are also times when the complete opposite happens.

Creativity grows when surrounded by creativity.

Join a writing group.

Talk to other writers.

Talk to potential readers.

Read books that aren’t in your comfort zone and see how you feel when you’re done.

Participate in a critique group.

I always feel more inspired and creative after I’ve done any one of these things.  It just took me a day of teaching drama to remember how great it is to interact.

July 17, 2012

Will Anybody Want to Read my Sequel?

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As I continue to struggle with creating any form of decent writing, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the projects I’m currently avoiding.  My biggest avoidance at the moment is the sequel to my first suspense novel.  This is a book that I’m very passionate about finishing.  My characters need me to let them tell the rest of their story.

And yet, as each day goes by, I do not write anything.

The other night I sat down to watch Bunheads, a new Amy Sherman-Palladino series on ABC Spark.  I was drawn to the show for several reasons.  Amy created The Gilmore Girls, one of my  all-time favorite shows.  Amy’s dialogue is snappy and her characters embrace uniqueness.  One of the leads in the series is Fanny, played by Kelly Bishop, formerly Emily Gilmore of Gilmore Girls fame.  The studio that I co-own teaches ballet and pointe and a variety of other dance classes.

I knew I’d love this show.

As of last night, I’ve now seen five episodes of Bunheads.  Much to my surprise, I’m not really loving it.  Although it contains the same type of quirky characters and quippy dialogue, it somehow plays like a poor second cousin to Palladino’s Gilmore Girls.  I’m hoping, with time, that it will find its way into my heart, but it’s going to take work.  I don’t know how much longer I’ll hang in.

That got me to thinking about my sequel.

My first suspense novel, “When Love Won’t Die”, has been very well received.  I’ve had lots of great reviews and just as many inquiries as to the status of the sequel.  Most of my followers can’t wait to get their hands on the next book.

But what if it’s a poor second cousin to the first book?

What if people don’t really like it?

I know what you’re probably thinking.  Bunheads and “When Love Won’t Die” are completely different.  Obviously one’s a TV show and one’s a book.  But they do have something in common.  They are both another product of their creator.  They are both going to be compared to other works by the same author.

So do I quit writing the sequel for fear it won’t be as good as the first book?  Will anybody want to read my sequel?

Yes, I really do believe they will.

Why?

Because I’m going to make sure that the writing is even better than the first book.  I’m using many of the same characters, but for those who have read “When Love Won’t Die”, they will see more complex, interweaving sub-plots and lots of character development.

Bunheads isn’t a sequel to the Gilmore Girls.  Unfortunately, many viewers will compare Kelly’s Fanny character to Emily Gilmore and the new young lead, Michelle, to Lorelei.  I know I have. But they shouldn’t.  This is a new series.  It’s not a sequel to anything.  Maybe I don’t really like it because it doesn’t revisit Stars Hollow and all the quirky characters I grew to love during the Gilmore’s seven year run.

So what has all of this taught me?

Once your stuff is out there, you develop a following.  Your readers will be inclined to compare your books to each other.  I don’t want to disappoint them.  Maybe that’s why I haven’t been able to work on my sequel. 

Or maybe, I just have to stop thinking so much and get my butt in the chair and write something…anything.  Finish the darn book! 

Amy Sherman-Palladino isn’t sitting around wondering whether or not she should create another series.  When The Wyoming Project didn’t make it into the 2010-2011 TV schedule, Palladino went on and created Bunheads.

Will anybody want to read my sequel?

I’ll never know if I don’t finish it. 

Do you have a project that you’re avoiding?  Join me and let’s finish them together.

To find out more about Amy Sherman-Palladino, read this article:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amy_Sherman-Palladino

To find out more about her new series, Bunheads,follow this link: http://abcfamily.go.com/shows/bunheads/

To purchase “When Love Won’t Die”, check out the following sites:
http://www.amazon.com/When-Love-Wont-Die-ebook/dp/B004AYD6YE

http://redrosepublishing.com/books/product_info.php?products_id=649
http://www.kobobooks.com/ebook/When-Love-Wont-Die/book-p2VHGKHWAE6biZdRsFV_tA/page1.html

January 30, 2012

Visiting the classroom as a Guest Author

I was invited to speak to two classes of children (included 4th, 5th and 6th grade students) for literacy week.  The principal invited local published authors to speak to the kids about what it’s like to be a writer.

I’ve never enjoyed giving a speech.  The thought of being up there alone, and as myself, doesn’t paint a very interesting picture in my mind.  Let me recite a monologue as a fabulous literary character from a great work of fiction, and that excites me.

So how was I going to interest these young minds in two areas that many admitted they didn’t really enjoy doing:  reading and writing.

Instead of giving a speech and trying to figure out how to make them listen to me ramble on about my thoughts on being a writer, I turned the tables to them and started my presentation by asking them some questions:

1.    What makes a book interesting enough for you to want to read it?

2.    What types of characters do you enjoy?

3.    What kinds of stories interest you?

4.    What turns you off in a book?

The enthusiastic hand waving instantly got us talking.  Even those kids who said they really didn’t like to read much had comments on what types of stories they would prefer if they did have to read a book.

Next, I presented them with this question:

Have you ever read a story and wished you could have changed it?

This engaged even more enthusiasm as student after student offered their imaginative ways to improve upon stories they’d read.  They got excited when I told them that being a writer meant that they could make the story be whatever they wanted.  The characters would be designed by their imaginations.  Eager hands raised and creative ideas flowed as students, guest writer and teacher all engaged in the excitement of the writing process.

Finally, I offered a way to prompt them on starting a story.  I asked them all to close their eyes and ask themselves this question…What if? 

What if when I went to sleep tonight…
What if my lunch box was filled with…
What if the teacher could…
What if the stairs at school turned into jello…
What if I could draw something and it would come to life and…

Now the students were really excited and wanted to write their own *what if* story.

I also showed them some of the magazines, anthologies and market books I’ve had work published in and talked to them a little about what it takes to write an entire book and the process required to get it published.  They seemed most impressed with the fact that something that they could create could actually earn them some money as a career someday.

I hope that my visit helped convince many of them to enter the writing contest being held in our city next month.  I do know that I definitely helped them get a jump-start on tapping into their own creative ideas.

But the best part of the visit was watching them get excited about reading and writing. 

As a writer, what do you do to inspire those around you?

September 20, 2011

You’ve written a play…now what?

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I love my job!  One of my responsibilities is to provide my studio’s drama department with original play scripts for each class. 

For some folks that sounds like a daunting task but I love it!

This semester I’m working on a circus mini musical for the 6-9 yr. olds, a modern day Ms. Scrooge play for the 10-16 yr. olds and a full-length pirate musical, complete with songs and choreography for the 9-18 yr. old class.

I’m lucky!  I know exactly what’s going to happen once I finish my plays.

Each class will begin to work on becoming their characters, blocking and physical movement, memorizing lines, learning songs and choreography and working together on the project. 

I said I was lucky.  Why?  Because I get to be there to watch it all unfold.  I can see how things work that I’ve written and tweak anything that doesn’t seem to be working. 

My writing will come to life right before my very eyes.

Now I realize that I’m very lucky to have access to these groups of kids and teens who are more than willing to act out whatever scripts I bring to class.

Many (or maybe even most) playwrights don’t have instant access to a production like I do, but there are ways to get productions of your scripts.

* Contact local amateur theatre groups/troupes and ask if they are willing to read your script

* Enter contests where the prize is a staged reading or a production (beware: some contests  
   have entry fees.  You have to decide if the fee is worth it for the potential prize)

* Find a local writing group and/or make other connections that may lead to a production

* Contact schools, drama clubs or other groups that may entertain the idea of putting on a
   show

* Organize your own production (more on that later).

For me, getting my plays published means I can reach a wider audience and perhaps won’t have to do ALL of the marketing myself to get my plays out there..but…productions, whether amateur or professional are what it’s all about in the end.

“The Play’s the Thing” 
       Shakespeare

September 14, 2011

Download-file.net SCAM SITE update

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Just an update to my previous post on this site that appears to be illegally offering content for free download.

Several writers have gone to the site and found that their books were indeed posted without their permission.  Many contacted their publishers and also contacted the site.

Some members of my critique group and also some from my publisher decided to search everything from big name authors to complete jibberish and guess what?  Yep – everything and anything searched came back with results.

So fear not, fellow writers.  Although the site makes it appear that your books have been stolen, it’s unlikely that the site has any legitimate content whatsoever.

But here’s the real warning…

In order to download content, one must join the site and pay the introductory trial fee of $4.99.  That means divulging credit card info. 

DON’T DO IT!

I contacted Angela Hoy of writersweekly.com earlier this week and her thoughts were that perhaps the download links are viruses.  So, if you pay to join the trial membership and then click on one of the downloads to see if it’s really your book, you could end up inviting a virus into your computer.

The beauty of the internet is that we are all connected and getting information out is relatively easy and extremely quick.

As far as download-file.net is concerned…DANGER WIL ROBINSON!

April 29, 2011

Your play: published or produced?

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As the resident playwright for Slightly off Broadway triple threat studio, I create 6-8 new scripts every school year.  There was a time when I believed that I really hadn’t done justice to my plays unless I managed to get them published or in an anthology collection.

As the years went by, I realized that the greatest pleasure I get from writing my plays and musicals is watching them unfold during the rehearsal process and then seeing the final product up on the stage during the performances.  After all, plays are meant to be seen and heard, not just read.  This is what makes plays different from all other forms of fiction writing.

I know several playwrights who have developed their own publishing companies solely for the purpose of self-publishing their plays.  That way, they don’t have to share royalties when they sell copies to schools and drama clubs. 

Over the years I’ve ordered sample copies of plays from several different publishers.  Some produce a fine product but many others create an amateur looking cardstock cover folded over and stapled to the printed sheets.  I can make copies that look better by doing it myself.  Also, if I have them published with someone else, then I have to share revenue on each sale.  So I understand why so many playwrights choose to create their own company and their own product.

But for me, publication isn’t the forerunner for my plays.  It’s the productions that I crave.  Besides the Slightly off Broadway performances, I have sold copies of my plays to school drama clubs and organizers of summer drama camps.  Knowing that something I have created can be shared with performers and audiences all over the globe is far more satisfying to me than having my play listed in a catalogue.  That’s not to say I wouldn’t love to be listed with the likes of someone like Samuel French – who wouldn’t? 

So how do I get the word out that I have plays available?

I advertise on the Slightly off Broadway website.  I read ezines and forums that pertain to playwriting.  I talk to teachers who are looking for new material.  I do my own networking.

Am I getting rich selling copies of my plays for productions?

Nope.

Am I satisfied knowing that every single one I have written to date has had at least one production?

Absolutely.

Publication or Production…you decide.

http://www.slightlyoffbroadway.com

http://www.samuelfrench.com

http://www.stageplays.com

October 5, 2010

Dear Blog – forgive me for deserting you

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As I replied to a recent comment on my blog, it was with complete shock that I saw the date of my last post!  How did I let so much time pass without updating my blog. 

Dear Blog:  Can you ever forgive me?

Perhaps this is a good lesson in discipline.  As freelance writers, we don’t have someone (a boss) breathing down our necks when we’re creating a new novel or writing a new play.  We are completely and totally responsible for getting our butts in our chairs and our fingers on the keyboard if we hope to ever create a completed manuscript.

Although I pride myself on my time management skills when running my performing arts business, I have let down my blog readers by not using those same skills to keep my blog updated. 

September, in particular, is one of the busiest months for my business.  Registering students for new classes, setting up schedules, doing the massive amounts of paperwork and writing new drama playscripts for fall semester classes all demand a huge chunk of my time.  Couple that with working on the final edits of my ebook (more about that soon) and suddenly, an entire month has slipped by and it’s October.

On a happy note, however, I have been writing:

So dear Blog, please forgive me for deserting you.  I promise to make you a priority once again.

Blog on, everyone.

December 12, 2008

Do you actually achieve your writing goals?

My critique group moderator just posted our 2008 writing goals.  I’m always excited and hesitant to revisit them. 

Did I accomplish what I thought I would be able to do in 2008?

Did I do more?

So, here are my 2008 writing goals and my commentary for each one.  I didn’t do too badly.

But wait – there was a lot not on the list…

I have 2 children’s poems coming out in Hopscotch for Girls magazine in 2009.

I wrote 6 new plays for kids and teens last year.

I wrote an original song for our church’s 100th anniversary service.

My article, The Business of Playwriting, got purchased by Writer’s Digest books for 2 upcoming market books.

I’ve collected several agents and publishers for my adult suspense novel.

I think I’m happy with my progress.

Anyway, here’s what I originally posted to my critique group:

Jacqueline’s 2008 Goals:

So…for 2008

1. Get an agent or publisher interested in the adult thriller. THIS IS THE YEAR of the thriller…I can feel it.
Well, I’ve saved potential agents and publishers that I plan to sub this to but didn’t want to jump the gun until the final revision is at least nearly complete.  I AM doing this in January, though.

2. Back to square one on Thinkers(YA). I know so much more now about writing that I’m positive this time I’ll approach it so much better than the first draft. 

I think I’ll be subbing this to the group once the suspense novel is done.
3. Find a publisher for some of my playscripts AND/OR enter some of them in contests for productions. I did enter a couple contests – haven’t heard back so I guess I didn’t win LOL  Also did research publishers and have a couple in mind.  Just haven’t subbed anything yet.

4. Learn how to use 2 music software programs I own that I never seem to find the time to work with. 

This is hilarious – I actually used one of the programs when I wrote an original piece for our church’s 100th anniversary year service in June.  I just picked my way around until I figured it out, so I guess I did this somewhat.

5. Try getting into my chicklit YA called “Quick, pass the chips.”
This was book one of my nano disastrous attempt this year.  Couldn’t get into it no how…sigh.  I switched to a 2nd suspense novel and planned a lot of it out but never wrote much of anything.

 

6. Do Nanowrimo again next year and get past this year’s 33,000 words.  I think I did 1200 words.  Wow!!!

These all seem reasonable and doable.(I’m so naive-hahaa) We’ll see what happens when Sandy reminds us next December of what we wanted to do this year LOL
 

 

November 13, 2008

Kids putting on Musicals

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Whether you’re a school teacher looking for a great musical for your class (or entire school) or a small children’s theatre or even a drama school, I found a great resource.  The musicals are basically “junior” versions of the full length musicals. 

So what am I talking about?

Broadway Junior.  It’s a great website and a great concept for adults who work with kids who want to put on musicals.  They carry a good selection of titles, all in the “junior” format, including:

 “Beauty and the Beast” “Aladdin”, “Annie”, “Seussical”, “Alice in Wonderland”, “Godspell”, “Guys and Dolls”, “Mulan”, “Pirates of the Penzance”, “Schoolhouse Rock”, “Bugsy Malone”, “Dear Edwina”, “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Honk”, “Into the Woods”, “The Music Man”, “Once on this Island”, “Willie Wonka” and “Thoroughly Modern Millie”.

I had the priviledge of seeing “Aladdin Junior” done with school kids from grades 4-6 last year and the production was terrific.  There were lead parts and smaller parts for those who don’t like memorizing and lots of room for chorus.  Even though this was a shortened version of the original, this “junior” production kept the integrity of the story and the characters and included the songs audiences would recognize and want to hear. The CD accompaniment tracks made the whole production sound professional from start to finish.

The showkit contains everything you need to stage your own musical.  Can’t dance?  There’s even a choreography video to help you stage dance numbers.  A piano score makes learning each new song easy. Check it all out at:

http://www.broadwayjr.com/store/showkitproduct.asp?oid=3

September 16, 2008

Writing Plays for kids – Look around, inspiration is everywhere.

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I love my job!  Part of what I do involves an aspect of writing that I thoroughly enjoy – writing plays for our drama department.  This means that during any given school year I’m likely creating 6-8 original scripts.

But after a while, coming up with new ideas that I know will appeal to our students can become a daunting task. 

So where do I turn for inspiration?

The kids, of course!

Just being around all the different ages of students who come through our doors can provide me with tons of new material.  Kids love to share and they have great stories from what they did on summer vacation to something that happened at school to their fears or their hopes and dreams.  That’s when I write a play about a subject they can relate to because it’s likely gone on in their world.

But the kids don’t always want to play kids.  They love to be creative and become something other than who they are and that’s when I turn to some other very accessible sources.

TV shows provide great fodder.  Reality TV is huge right now so writing a play about a type of “Survivor”, but with a twist, proved to be very successful with our intermediate class.  If the students know it from TV, they will relate to doing their version on the stage.

Who hasn’t read a great suspense novel or watched a mystery or ghost story movie?  Our teen class had a blast with a murder-mystery we wrote where one of the girls actually had to play twins and our juniors did a comical haunted house theme that had the audience mesmerized until the end.

Songs can also be a great source of inspiration.  I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with our littlest children in the “intro” class this semester and the song “Lollipop” just gave me a great idea.

We’ve all played board games.  Why not write a play where the kids are inside the game?

Hot topics of the day are also great choices, especially if you’re trying to write a play with a message that could be used to help kids deal with an issue, like bullying or self-esteem.

Look around!  Inspiration is everywhere – you just have to know where to look.

August 24, 2008

Sometimes a diversion is a great way to get back on track

It’s been a hectic couple of weeks and writing has taken a complete back seat.  I can’t wait to get back into my novel – I’m so close to finishing that final rewrite I can taste it.

So, what have I been doing?

Our studio held two different music camps for kids.  Each one lasted a week.  The first one was a theatre camp that focused on musicals, in particular, High School Musical, Hairspray and Camp Rock.  The kids got to work on big group production numbers High School Musical and Hairspray as well as singing some of the beautiful slow ballads from HSM 2.  Then, we choreographed a funky hip hop routine to Hasta La Vista from Camp Rock.  The kids loved it.  They also did lots of improvisation games, learned vocal technique, and dabbled in many of the aspects of musical theatre.  It was tons of fun.

The second camp was an IDOL camp and we really put these kids through their paces.  Ranging in age from 10-14, they were immersed in the whole IDOL process from auditioning to working in groups as well as preparing a solo.  We brought in judges on the final day and had a true idol competition with prizes for the first, second and third places. 

Being around all these creative kids has both worn me out and inspired me to get back to my own creativity.  It was a great diversion though and I’m glad to have spent the past two weeks singing, dancing, and creating in the performing arts.

Sometimes, a diversion is a great way to get back on track.

August 7, 2008

How does the summer affect your creativity?

Today’s the first week of August and technically we’re into the last half of the summer season.  Have you been on a vacation?  Had company from out of town?  Spent time at the beach? 

These are all typical summer activities, especially for those of us who live in a place with four very distinct seasons. 

I used to think that the long days of endless summer sun would call me outside and away from my computer.  I imagined two months of little or no writing time.  Let’s face it – summer goes by quickly, right?  We have to enjoy it while it’s here.

But summer also means that my business (performing arts studio) runs fewer programs, leaving me more free time.  I tend to be someone who works best in a structured schedule and following deadlines.  So, for the first couple of weeks off the summer after I started my business, my writing output was minimal to non-existent.  This was summer – time to relax, right?

But soon I found myself packing a hard cover writing book, several pens and a couple of books in my beach bag.  The more time I spent at public beaches, parks and shopping malls, the more ideas I began to imagine as future writing projects.  Interactions between families or groups of kids playing together spawned poems about friendship, summer activities, weather and other such topics.  An idea for a play about kids at a summer camp came to mind.  I even penned a mystery/ghost story as I wondered about an abandoned old shack on a patch of land overgrown with foliage.

We’re writers – right?  It’s what we do.  It only stands to reason that it doesn’t take long for our surroundings to begin to supply us with all sorts of ways to be creative.

I love living in a place with four distinct seasons.  I love feeling the different energy that each season gives to my writing.

WINTER:  

It’s cold out (and dark a lot more) so I can hunker down with a big project or finish up pieces that I’d started but not completed.

SPRING:   

A time for renewal – time to send out those subs I’ve been working on all year.

SUMMER:  

Less structured but a time to re-energize and find the creativity around me.  Time to get all those new ideas down.

FALL:      

School starts again.  Classes begin at our studio.  It’s time to get into action and work on several projects, prioritizing which ones require my attention first.

How do the seasons affect your creativity?

January 29, 2008

Is blogging really writing?

Blogs have become the latest craze on the internet.  People in all walks of life can create their own space online and post anything they are thinking about or want to share.

Some people use blogs as a way of communicating with friends and family.  Others use blogs as a means of self expression.  Still others blog in order to make new friends, acquaintances and maybe even find a romance.

So is that writing? 

Well, I’m not going to answer that – I’ll leave it up to you.

Instead, what I’ll say is that the blog has become a useful tool for writers of all kinds, from those published and highly successful (J.K.Rowling has a blog, for example) to those looking to get attention and maybe even possible representation.

One of the writers in one of my critique groups got asked to send a partial to an agent because of her blog.  (So a word to the wise – remember that whatever you say in your blog, it can be read by anyone.)

A lot of reputable writers have blogs and post everything from their ezines to markets, jobs, contests, articles, links and the latest news from the writing world.  And some of these bloggers have a fantastic following.

So is blogging really writing?

I guess I will answer my own question after all.  Of course it is. 

Is it professional writing?

You be the judge!

November 9, 2007

Another way to get unstuck

Working on a full length novel can seem like a daunting project, especially when the creativity train stalls on the track mid point.  If you’re like me, it’s time to get away from the computer (or notebook, which I still prefer because when I write by hand my brain and my handwriting speed are usually about the same) and get some perspective.

Sometimes I walk away to get away from the story, the characters and the plot.  But avoidance has never been my favorite tactic when stuck on any task. 

Because I have a background in theatre and music, I have enjoyed performing in numerous plays and musicals and find that the most fun for me, even when singing a song, is asking myself “who is this character”?  What’s she like?  Why is she saying this?  How does she feel at the moment?

So I tried it with my Nanowrimo book and guess what?  Charlotte, my main character, had lots to say to me and through me.  Yesterday 3000 words poured out because I put myself in her shoes.  It wasn’t something I’d call fun, because Charlotte’s character faces challenges and events that are somewhat unnerving.  But I found my connection to her – the connection that made me want to go on.

In my suspense thriller novel that I’m revising, I had to figure out my villain.  My mentor, Marilyn Henderson http://www.mysterymentor.com/ said that my villain needed to be more nasty.

Now, because I’m not a stalker, I’m not crazy (at least I don’t think so) and I’m not a man, writing him was already presenting its share of challenges.  But back to my first way to get unstuck:  WHAT IF?

What if I was this person?  What would motivate me to act and what would the result be?  So, not one to shy away from a challenge, I jumped into his mind, body and soul with both feet.  I don’t know if I should be happy or worried telling you that he is now far scarier than ever before and a whole new, demented side of his personality has shown up. 

But shaking off the characters can be a difficult thing to do.  Sometimes my heroine gets inside my head and she won’t leave me alone until I address something in the book.  I’m a little better keeping my villain at bay until I’m ready for him, but once I get inside either of them, new plot twists and ideas seem to run rampant at times.

So even if you don’t have a theatrical background, try living in the shoes of one of your characters for 24 hours and see where it takes your writing.  It may surprise you.

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