Character Deep Dives (CDD)

((Above pictures found on Google Images. Not mine.))

 

Diving deep into characters is, I am finding, extremely important to stories. Yes, it is about the story, but without great, well-thought-out characters, there wouldn’t be a story. We all fall in love with this character and hate that one. Why is that? Because the author knows the character. Feels the character. And I am learning to let my characters talk to me a lot more so that I can write them well, especially in my current WIP, which covers the very serious topics of human trafficking/modern slavery, prostitution, abuse, drugs, and mob organizations.

So, because of these deep dives, I now know a lot more about my main character Arkmenos Kilrak and am getting to know the villain’s right hand girl, Treina. Now, when I tell people that my characters ‘talk’ to me, if they are not writers/creatives, they look at me like I’m nuts. And that is okay because I am a little crazy….all creatives are, to some extent, but that’s another post!

I started this story, Edge of Nightmares, coming from a TOTALLY different direction, almost 2 years ago, and only one of the characters talked to me at that time which made it hard to write. So, I stopped and started working on something else. Well, something told me to pick it up again a few weeks ago, and to look at it differently. Now, most of the characters are talking to me, and I’m getting backstories and writing short stories so that I will have really good knowledge of the characters so I can write the full story.

CDDs are full of questions that some people don’t even think about when putting characters to paper. You have to look at your characters like a normal human person. Like your best friend, sister, mother, etc. When you meet someone new, you take time to get to know them right? Characters are the same way! Get to know them like a friend…dig down deep so you know their deep dark secrets and you’ll be able to channel that onto the paper/computer and make your readers love or hate them!

I hope you enjoyed this little insight! I’ll be sharing little teasers and ‘getting to know <name of character>’ bits  so I hope you click that follow button so you never miss any!

~Blessings~

Cyn

Advertisements

Edge of Nightmares Teaser

eye-1359234_1920

 

“I’ve done everything you’ve asked, Celerina,” The first voice is Treina, her boss. “All I want for is to be full owner. I don’t think that’s asking too much.”

“Give you my club? What makes you think you’ve earned that?” The second voice – Celerina? – belongs to a woman with an odd accent. “You are not done repaying me just yet, and I do not just give up my clubs, especially this one…”

“Give up!? I am the one running things here…I am the one busting my ass every day making this club what it is!” Treina interrupts her.

“You forget what I know about you, Jade,” the woman interjects.

‘Jade?” Gina wonders to herself as she does her best to stand quietly, pondering whether she should go get security. She decides to stay a bit longer just in case, and shifts closer to the door to try and peek through the office window.

“I’ve made deals for you!” Treina yells. Gina winces when her voice hits the sharp F an octave higher than normal that indicates she’s pissed. “I’ve swindled people. Hell, I’ve even laundered money, and worse for fucks sake! You’re changing the deal, Celerina, and I don’t like it.”

Celerina laughs haughtily. “Now, now, Jade….”

“Don’t! Don’t call me that again. Jade is dead. I left that name and everything attached to it a long time ago.”

“Until I say so, I own you….Jade. You are never too far from who you used to be and there is much I still want from you.”

©CynASnow2018

Voices in our heads

729c2c1cb8827fd2b3449732bf1f5930
From Google Images

We as writers have quirks and eccentricities that non-writers do not understand. One of those ‘quirks’ is hearing our characters in our heads. Some of us have characters that simply help spur on the book by ‘telling’ us how the story goes as we are writing it. Other writers actually have their characters talk to them and react to things we’ve written or something one of our friends has said about them.

Take for instance the villain in my first novel, Khilseith Olastra. He is an ego-maniacal narcissistic archmage who thinks he should be the main character and everything should be about him. I shared a snippet of something horrible he does with my tribe (i.e. those I trust will read my stuff and not blab about them in public)  and one of them who is totally enamored with Khilseith reacted exactly as I thought she would. She couldn’t believe he would do something so horrible and was saying “noooo. WHYYY Khilli-poo!” And as I read that statement, I ‘heard’ a very irritated Khilseith in my head and this was the conversation that followed–

“Khili-poo!? How DARE she! Does she not know who I am!?”

I responded with “Of course she does. She loves you!”

“Well of course she does, I….am amazing.”

“But you’re a horrible person.”

“I am not. I did what had to be done. She was a traitor that had to be dealt with.”

Now some may think I am crazy for sharing this, but I know many writers who have this type of thing happen on a regular basis and I have been asked to share ‘behind-the-scenes’ and this is one of the many things that happens. To me and many of my fellow writers.

This is what it is like to have a creative brain. Writers ‘hear voices’, artists are ‘told’ what they should paint/colors they should use/etc, photographers have feelings or go by their instincts on when and where to take photos.

Are you a writer who has conversations with your characters? Let me know down in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

~Cyn~

Week 2, Day 5 – Brave New World

Today’s Prompt is: “You have an enchanted backpack that gives you exactly what you need for that day. Today, you pull out a sword.”

Lily is up before sunrise and tries to be as quiet as a mouse as she gets dressed, throws her hair up in a bun, and stands looking at a bag she was handed the night before. The bag looks simple and does not look like it is holding weapons of any kind, but she was told to look at the bag, think about what she needs or wants to train with, and then reach in the bag. So she takes a breath, thinks about what she wants, and reaches into the bag. She moves her hand around a bit, feeling the soft cloth that makes up the interior, then her fingertips brush something cool and round. She grabs hold of it and pulls out a basic rapier.  She stares at it for a moment, surprised that this was what she got, but, she had just thought about needing a proper weapon to train with when she meets with Captain Torthana. Out of curiosity, she thinks again, reaches into the bag, and pulls out a scabbard for the rapier. Smiling, she puts the rapier in the scabbard, attaches the belt to her waist, and then sneaks out of her chambers without alerting Amyra.

She waves at the guards as she walks out her door, goes and finds two guards that can escort her to the training area, and once they join her, they head over to meet with Captain Torthana.

The training area is  an open field, with training dummies forming a large circle.  Captain Torthana is in the center practicing. Lily stands and watches Torthana for a moment. Lily has seen most women swoon over Kelvhan Torthana.  He looks to stand around six feet tall, has broad shoulders, deep chocolate brown hair, and his eyes are a weathered burnished amber. The sides of his hair are kept in braids that are pulled back into a half ponytail while the rest of his hair flows to his shoulder in waves. Lily thinks to herself <He’s handsome I suppose, but I prefer my men intelligent more than handsome.>  She does a little half shrug, shakes her head, and calls out to the captain.

“Captain Torthana!”

He turns, swirling his sword, and sheathing it with a flourish, bowing to Lily as he faces her.

“My Queen.  Welcome to your first day of training.”

His eyes flick to the band around her waist and the weapon attached to it.

“I see you got a proper weapon from the bag. I told you you’d get what you needed.”

He waves his hand, inviting her to join him in the circle.

“Shall we begin?”

Week 2, Day 3 – Brave New World

Prompt: “You’re on an elevator that stops between floors. The doors open.”

After his meeting with Khilseith, Linvanu needed to have some time to think. He told his second in command to keep an eye on things and he’d be back in an hour.  He took a deep breath and looked at the contraption in front of him.  It is a wooden platform with three wooden half walls with railings for stability and runs on a pulley system that was built by the dark dwarves that lived under the adjoining city of Obsidian Valley.  He steps into it and clutches the railing and pulls on the rope twice to let the Cayheri at the bottom know where he wants to go.

The make-shift elevator bounces a little as it starts downward, then is smooth until it comes to its destination. The wooden lift jerks so hard as it stops between floors, Linvanu has to grip the railings with both hands to keep from falling over and sends a stream of harsh words down at the elf running the lift.

“Bozi Txa! Chent!”

“I am sorry my King! The rope stuck!”

“NO excuses! Fix it or spend tend days in the dungeon!”

Linvanu swears some more under his breath as he knocks on the wall and watches the wall shimmer to life and steps into it.  As soon as he is inside the hidden cave, the door disappears. He stands still for a moment, taking a few breaths to calm himself, before he walks forward and sits in front of the wall that has elvish writing on it.

He brushes the wall to remove any dirt and dust that has accumulated and then lets his palm rest on it.

“Hello my love. I am sorry it’s been so long.”

21430452_10154652806996916_1612578003676300403_n

Week 2, Day 2 – Brave New World

Today’s Prompt is: “You look outside one morning and realize you’re looking at a completely different city skyline.”

Lily stretches, turns over, and opens her eyes and blinks as she focuses on the canopy above her.  It takes her a moment until she realizes where she is.  She sighs and throws back the covers and sits up. She pulls on the robe that her handmaiden had laid on the end of the bed for her, thinking <that is so weird that I have a handmaiden!>, then walks over to the balcony and looks out over the city of Galna Alari.

The sight took her breath away. The sun was just coming up and the light was filtering through the trees, hitting the exquisite elven city so perfectly that the colors from the buildings sparkled spectacularly sending rainbows all over the gardens. Lily was in awe over this displace of perfection and beauty and truly realized she was in a different world now. She had seen gorgeous sunrises before, but this scene was something the humans would truly describe as heaven and could only imagine in their dreams.

21430452_10154652806996916_1612578003676300403_n

Angel of Syn

d37400e5fcc75e724eb524f65dde28cf
Pic used for inspiration — found on Google

*Took a break from novel and wrote this. It is from a writing prompt and an old RP character*

I woke up covered in blood, and all I had left of my wings was a single, solitary feather that I held in my hand.

<what the hell happened!? where the hell are my wings!?> I tried to ask out loud, but it only came through in my head.

A deep voice that I knew I should recognize answered the questions.

((Look around you and then maybe you will understand.))

I looked around and saw piles of bodies around me, the midnight feathers that once flared out from my back scattered on top of them, tattered and dotted with blood. I reached behind me and only felt nubs that once were beautiful raven wings and pain ripped through me as my fingers brushed the broken bones. I screamed in anguish.

<WHY! I served her as well as you did! I did as she asked! Why would she take my wings away save this one perfect feather?>

**She did not take your wings. You did. You were crazed throughout this battle, like you were possessed. We tried to stop you but whatever possessed you made you stronger than the three of us together.**

Once I heard them explain what happened, I realized the voices answering me were my fellow warriors.

<Where are you? Why are you not with me?>

((Until you figure a way to regrow your wings, you are stuck on Earth. We will watch over you and Mother will see that you are at least healed and taken care of, but YOU must find out why you were crazed and how you can get your wings back.))

**We must go dearest sister. But remember you can call on us and we shall answer**

When they left, the only thing that could be heard was my wracking sobs and the caws from the crows and the raspy, hissing sounds of the vultures as they fed on the dead.

Word Count is over 9,000!

download

Just popping in to say hi, hope you all are having a great weekend and to say that I have almost hit the 13k mark on my novel! Have a prologue even and am making some adjustments to my first chapter thanks to some amazing feedback from fellow writers/coach.  So things are trucking along good, breakthroughs are happening, and the story is coming to life one scene at a time!

New pen name and story brain dump

As I’m sure you all have noticed I have changed my name on here. Being as I write different genres, I decided to have a pen name to differentiate between my kids books and the rest of my writings and after discussing with hubby and soul sisters, we came up with Cyn A. Snow. Cyn, being short for Cynthia/Cyndi, A- my middle initial, and Snow, which is my mother’s maiden name. This way I still have my actual name, it’s just a little different. Let me know what you think down in the comments!

Now. I am in a 6 month writing intensive, as I’ve discussed and during our first week which started Sunday, we have to do what’s called a Story Brain Dump. It helps us go over important things in the story to make sure we have all the components sorted and to write out anything else that pops up that we feel is important to the story.  SO far, my favorite part that I’ve done is the “What is the world like?” and I’m going to share what I’ve written for it so far and maybe will share what I add later but we’ll see as I don’t want to give away too much hehe!

And away we go! Enjoy and again, make sure you let me know what you think in the comments! I love getting suggestions or hearing other’s thoughts on what I write. Helps make my writing better. Thank you!

#StoryBrainDump #FE

“What’s the world like?”

My world is a hidden realm called Vaedrathan nestled in the northwestern part of England. It is filled with elves of different flavors, dwarves that mine the most beautiful of gemstones & build fantastic cites, orcs that rule the desert with blood and lightning, and mysterious ruins that are rumored to be overrun with the undead.

*Here is my map that I made on inkarnate.com — rough idea of Vaedrathan at the moment*

Map1
©CynASnow2017

Outline and World Building!

coffee-2425254_1280

142 words tonight.

Doesn’t seem like a lot to some, but being as it’s an outline to help me set up/flesh out the world of Vaedrathan as I know it right now, it is a lot. Plus, it got typed into my app on my phone, then hand-written into a notebook, then typed into Google docs.

Pretty excited as I know more about this world than my other ones, so that definitely tells me that this is THE book. Can’t wait to really dive into it when Fiction Expedition starts with the AMAZING FANTASTICAL Head Unicorn Debbie Burns !!!