I find sometimes trying to personalize characters can be tricky especially if your using your own experiences in the matter. Sometimes the characters are so different from who you are, how does that affect how you see the situation afterwards? I’ve gone back to reading scenes and dialogue characters use and realize things I didn’t before. In The Demons Inside at first the character made choices I don’t think I would make now and then choices I should have made sooner.
It was also a challenge to represent the feelings I wanted them to feel. It’s based a lot on how wild the mind can be when your struggling. I reflected my struggles with mental illness into this character. They go on journey’s through worlds and are trying to figure out if they should give up or fight on. It’s strange how sometimes writing can help you answer questions you’ve wanted answers too or simple unlock your mind. I think writing is a great tool into understanding things and one of my favorite parts of writing are the characters.
I ask you guys on the Facebook page and here’s some thoughts from two great writers!
Dianne Gallagher : “I actually do “kill my darlings.” And it isn’t easy. Eliminating characters you love who readers feel are “safe” really ups the ante and drives home that fact that anything can happen. In thrillers, that’s key. You get attached to them and feel a little cruddy for doing it, but when they have to go… well, they have to go. No matter how you feel about them.”
Shannon Thompson: “In my first novel, Daniel becomes very suicidal at the end. The hardest part about the scene was how one of the youngest kids (four years old) stops him more by accident than on purpose. I think it was harder to get into his decision/mindset after he realized a child would’ve found him rather than just in the moment of being suicidal. In another novel, I realized one of my characters needed to cry, because I literally started tearing up (which may sound ridiculous, but it felt real.) In that situation, I hadn’t planned on them crying, so it was hard to incorporate it once I realized they had to.”