Thursday, May 13, 2010

SHADOWED CHARACTERS

I'd like to thank anyone who read my scene, yesterday, that I posted under the framework of the awesome The Alliterative Allomorph Australian blogger. She just happens to live in my favorite place in the whole entire world. GREECE!! 


    Is this picture not just a dream???
    I so want to go there...someday.






The Internal Conflict Contest was a great way to stretch myself and see if I had anything in me interesting enough that people would want to read. In case you missed it and want to read it, click on the BUTTON


(Shh...it's a magic button and will take you to the place where a tenacious 16-yr-old girl does everything she can to annoy and boy who happens to be the reason she's alive. Of course, she doesn't know this nor that he's not totally human.)


I'm not one to splatter my writing on this blog for all to see. Have a few short stories post; that's it. And basically, posting those was a self-test. It was something I needed to do to push myself. They're hidden behind the confines of static pages so that made it easier.


HIDDEN. BACKGROUND. SHADOWED.


Ever had a character like that. You developed this character for the main purpose of scenery. But what happens when the character WON'T listen? Tries to enter every scene or pushes to the forefront of your mind, constantly needling you.


Or what if the opposite happens? You have such high hopes for one of your main characters or secondary characters and they become lazy slugs that have nothing to say.


I bring this up because last night I joined YAlitchat on Twitter. I was so pumped. 


See, it was a discussion with one of my favorite people. I only met her, via cyberspace, a month ago but we hit it off. Meaning: we started conversing and then I was contacted by *her people* and asked to do a book review. ME. Totally cool. She's also doing and interview with me and a book giveaway. (Stay tuned for that.)


It's the fabulous and so sweet Helen Ellis, author of The Turning: What Curiosity Kills


So, last night, I entered my first tweet letting everyone know I was there--like they really cared--but I did. Poor Helen was having tech difficulties which took almost an hour to cure. I listened. Tweeted a few comments. Got one response.


Basically I felt like a bug no one wants in the room. Don't get me wrong. It's Twitter. Sh!t happens. No feelings hurt or anything. But it got me thinking about the characters we dress our scenes with.


Do your background characters do their job? OR do they give you a headache?

13 comments:

  1. I've tried the Ya Chat's and have bowed out. I always get lost in the shuffle. I love your analogy. I'd like to *think* my characters do their job but now I'm wondering. Maybe I'll take a a little read today and see if they give me a headache or not.

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  2. Congrats on the request for a book review. Very cool. I haven't tried the YA Twitter Chat because I just don't get Twitter yet. One day I'll figure it out!

    I'm going to go read your post now from yesterday.

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  3. Firstly, thanks so much for participating yesterday! I'm so glad you did, I really enjoyed your post :)

    I can't stand twitter. Nothing more to say to that.

    Congrats on being asked to write review!

    Nice question. I think my background characters do their job, but that's becasue I've written them. LOL. I hope they do!

    So glad we've 'met'. :) xx

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  4. Sherry,

    Last night was my first YALITCHAT too. I'd lurked for about 5 minutes a couple times, but couldn't keep up with everything flying past. Then I got Tweetchat last night and that made a difference. I think people mostly ignored me, too, but that's okay. I enjoyed reading what everyone else was saying, and it isn't personal at all. Think of YALITCHAT as being in a crowded room. The only people who are going to be heard are the ones who speak the loudest. Characters are a little like that. The ones who speak to you the loudest may have the most interesting things to say, or they may not. Maybe they just have one thing they feel needs to be heard. Sometimes they need to say it whether or not anyone else is listening. As the writer, it's your job to listen, then herd all those cats back into their proper places in the manuscript to make the whole work. It's not all about the characters. With everyone all talking at once, you--the writer--have to creat harmony out of noise.

    You rock. Don't ever let yourself feel invisible. Go write yourself into posterity.

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  5. Dude, the chats are ALWAYS like that. I just like to lurk and read them, and sometimes I comment. If I'm late, and can't figure out the topic, I just lurk some more.

    And I think that's sort of what background characters do. They lurk, and when they feel like they have something to say, they say it.

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  6. So far I've been lucky and this hasn't happened to me. But there have been characters that have unintentionally became favorites of people who have ready my ms. I have no idea why- I didn't think I made them particularly interesting but someone said they'd like to see a story staring 'said character' and I was completely taken off guard.

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  7. Congrats on the book review request. I don't follow twitter yet. I don't have time.

    Sometimes my shadow characters and secondary characters don't seem distinct enough. Sorry I couldn't comment yesterday. I was busy trying to organize a family reunion.

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  8. Thanks for dropping by my blog! :)

    My secondary characters generally do their job but sometimes they threaten to take over. I need to put them back in their cage!

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  9. I LIVE in GREECE so if you want to visit just let me know when to get the ouzo on the rocks rocking!

    Congrats on being asked to do a book review!

    Adventures in Childrens Publishing said it SO beautifully....

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  10. Sherry and Elana are wise - and they said it much better than I could. I've never tweeted or chatted. LOL! :-)

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  11. I'm terrified to show up on the chats! I once entered and felt like words were flying at me at 100 mph. You are a brave soul! The photo looks amazing. Makes me want a vacation.

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  12. We all feel that way on #yalitchat night sometimes. It's not a good feeling, but if you heave yourself into the conversation, it all flows well. I've met some really great people through yalitchat.

    I assure you, we cared when you arrived. I thought, "Oh, there's that awesome lady who takes the time to read my blog!" and I sent you a welcome.

    It was a shame Helen had those difficulties. Well, a shame to most. I sent her a few tweets and she responded to each one. We yucked it up for a bit and she ended up becoming my 100th follower! Needless to say, I was thrilled.

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  13. I had a semi minor character who decided to become more. I couldn't stop him so I let him do what he wanted and it worked out for the best. But fairies can be kinda pushy that way.

    Love the pic; I have the book The Greek Islands/Eyewitness travel and boy do I want to go.

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