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Avi Morgan
October 10th, 2006, 06:55 PM
I'm having serious trouble developing the ideas and characters for my new story because of restless thoughts. I'm under a lot of stress lately due to many things and usually in times of stress, writing is my outlet. It usually helps to put the thoughts in their place and help me cope with the stress. But this time, its just too much! My thoughts are so restless I can hardly fall asleep at night (and my dreams and sleep are a main source of ideas because I come up with a lot of my stuff at night). Whenever I try to write anything I just end up staring at the computer screen or the notebook writing sentence after sentence and paragraph after paragraph, deleting each one as soon as I've finished it because my thoughts are so jumbled up! All the ther times this has happened, I was able to overcome it easily so it didn't matter, but this time I can't seem to get over it. I havn't been able to write in three or four weeks now. My thoughts are just too restless and out of place, chasing each other around my head.

So does anyone have any advice or ideas about how to overcome this so I can start writing again? :confused: I know you aren't psychologists here but I'd really really appreciate it! :p (hey who knows maybe I'll be lucky enough to run into a psychologist!)

JBI
October 10th, 2006, 07:17 PM
What music are you listening to? It helps to listen to classical music such as Mozart when doing work (I find. It is almost imposible to work with lyrical music because I just end up singing a long or following the song). Also try to calm yourself before you write by taking a shower. Drinking tea also helps I find. When it comes to character though, you really don't need to sit there writing. The characters generally are created in your mind beforehand, and you just write their history and such later. Primaraly characters are build on perceptions of other people in your life, and a mixture of all you have seen. Everyone dislikes and likes some people, so logically, a quality you don't like about someone will appear in a villain/enemy of the protaganist. Generally though, character development you have to think of a few things.

Who in your life do you like and why? Why do you like some people and hate others? No one is perfect, what hardships/faults can I give my character? How can this character better fit into my story? The who, what, where, why, and how of the characters life. Who are his parents/family; how have they influenced his life? Who does he hang out with, what are his hobbies, how does he see himself.

Descriptive.
Height, color of hair, color of eyes, skin/facial features, voice, deamenor, strength, physical build, muscle bulk, how he percieves himself (does he/she think himself/herself ugly, undesirable. Does your character envy other better looking people? Also a lot of fantasy has culture. I'll give you a few examples of applications of appearances. In varios places and time the idea of "beauty" changes. In varios developing countries, large earlobes, big piercings, obiesity, self inflicted personal deformities such as small feet, and other things are considered things of great beauty. You do no means have to play an anthropologist, but you may want to add a few of those into the mix. Also you should consider marks such as moles, birth marks, warts, and other things for your characters.

Another important thing to consider is the role of varios groups in your society. Asuming it is taking place in a place/time other than ours, it is fair to asume the roles of different people change. In some countries, society is patriarchcal, whereas, in others society is matriarchcal. Comoners act differently than noble born people in different society. Language and conversation is reflexive of station in life. Garb and appearance may also be reflexive of station (In medieval Europe, it was considered atractive and a thing of beauty to be pale skinned. Dark/tanned skin was considered to mean that you were a labourer, and spent time working in the sun. Status itself was also given to appearance highly.)

I hope this helps. If you need more info on building characters just PM me. I wasn't quite sure if you wanted to learn how to really make a character, or just wanted help focusing.

Avi Morgan
October 10th, 2006, 08:05 PM
Thanks, I'll remember that :)

Michael B
October 11th, 2006, 12:10 PM
What music are you listening to? It helps to listen to classical music such as Mozart when doing work (I find. It is almost imposible to work with lyrical music because I just end up singing a long or following the song).
I find that slow folk or country music is grat for writing to as is folk instrumental. The key I think is the actual speed of what is playing. Too fast and I am bopping around in my chair.:eek:

Play something that you are comfortable with and does not speed you up. Keep that for the car on long journeys.

Avi Morgan
October 14th, 2006, 07:05 PM
Classical music just makes me sleepy :o . There are a few lyrical songs that put me in the mindset to write, Unforgiven and Unforgiven II by Metallica as well as Kings And Queens by Aerosmith to name a few. The truth is there's just too much going on in my life right now. I can't focus at all :( I guess what I'm asking is how do you writers who have day jobs and all find time to write, and how do you block everything else out when you do? :confused:

Michael B
October 15th, 2006, 01:19 AM
I guess what I'm asking is how do you writers who have day jobs and all find time to write, and how do you block everything else out when you do? :confused:
The writing is the easy part, at least for me. I tap in my notes in the evening and weekends.

It is the ideas that are the difficult bit and that is where the long drive in the morning and the lunch time walks come in handy. If a idea comes up in one of those, it can be knocked around to see how good it is and if not binned, transferred to note form whilst I am back in the office and in theory doing the day job. As latter involves starting up and running programs for a well known life assurance company, it is easy to slot in the noccasional shift from the night job.