Camp NaNo Update #6

Camp NaNo Update #6 banner

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I knew it was going to happen, just not this soon.

There’s always a character I didn’t plan on… or even knew, who shows up and plants themselves in the story.

This time, there were TWO and they couldn’t be more different.

A nineteen-year-old girl and an old man in his eighties.

Don’t quote me on this but the girl might be a ghost.

The old dude is just plain ornery… and a criminal.

What’s bizarre is how well they fit into the story. Which means someone else needs to leave. It’s getting crowded in Marbury, Pennsylvania.

Geeze, do I have to commit another murder?

Stay tuned.

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The first week of Camp NaNoWriMo is coming to an end. It’s been a good week. Looking forward to next week. I’m dying to know how some problems get resolved!

Day 6 word count – 12, 050.

Camp NaNo Update #4

Camp NaNo Update 4

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As I said in my #MondayBlog, Sins of the Mother started out as a flash piece for the #52weeks52stories writing challenge.

Since the posts are weekly and done from word prompts, there’s very little outlining done beyond a story sketch for continuity.

Protagonist Sally Bennett is the generic every-woman. Loving wife and mother. Dedicated employee. Compassionate and caring friend.

She’s so sweet she makes my teeth ring.

Yet, every week as this story unfolded, I couldn’t find a way to pour a little vinegar on her. After all, she was attacked and almost killed… by her husband.

Or was it him?

Since the attack, she’s passed out three times, thrown up three times, and been hospitalized.

As this mutated piece of flash makes the journey to novel-form, Sally’s suffering gets edgier as she tires of being the victim.

Lead detective, Gavin Marks, already has his hands full with the serial rapist case. He has no leads and no ideas which way to proceed.

Now an unidentified dead body has been added to his caseload, and it came with no clues.

This doesn’t sit well with the former military investigator and decorated officer. He shuns giving orders from his office in favor of being an active member of the investigation.

Gavin only wishes they knew what they are investigating.

The attack on Sally and the rapist terrorizing Marbury—are they connected? The lack of information will lead Gavin and his team in a direction no one could have predicted.

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I’m having fun with this WIP.

Except for the murderer.

I feel bad for him. Kind of.

But is he also the serial rapist?

When I find out I’ll let you know.

What Does Your Character Depend On?

Excellent insight for character development! 😉

A Writer's Path

by Hope Ann

There are three main questions, powerful, yet short, which an author should ask and answer for each of their characters. The first question is, what does your character want? What does he desire more than anything? What will he give anything for and what is he striving for? Coupled with this question (if the character is a major one) is what does he really need, and is it what he wants?

Secondly, what does your character fear? What will he do almost anything to avoid? Is what he wants more powerful than what he fears or vice versa?

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On The Necessity of Flawed Characters

A Writer's Path

by Mary Kate Pagano

I’ve gotten super into podcasts in this past year (file under #latetotheparty). Why? I think I thought they were all nonfictional musings on things. I didn’t realize there were a plethora of podcasts out there dissecting my favorite books and TV shows. Now I know, and I listen to them voraciously. And two things have come up recently on said podcasts I wanted to discuss, and relate back to writing.

In particular, flawed characters.

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Character Goals: the Key to Great Conflict

Writers – do your characters have clear goals?

Jed Herne: Writer

“Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.” – Kurt Vonnegut

Character motivation is the key to great stories. If you think about the stories you love, chances are they’re great because everyone in them has clear goals, dreams and desires. The clashes between these goals, dreams and desires creates conflict.

For example, in Game of Thrones, every character has a clear goal. These goals make each character seem more lifelike. They also give readers a reason to root for each of the characters, which is an impressive feat considering that each book in the series features 10+ point of view characters!

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How to Create Effective Character Names

Jed Herne: Writer

Names are an important part of all good characters. Names can be brave, funny, or menacing, and are an essential part of character creation. Personally, I always need a name for my characters before I can flesh them out, and that’s why today’s post will provide guidelines for crafting memorable, powerful and effective character names.

Consider Character Traits:

Is your character a tad meek, and maybe a little hopeless? If so, name them Neville Longbottom!

Is your character a tough, competant, I’ll-do-it-alone kinda guy? If so, call them Han Solo!

A character’s name is a reader’s first experience of that character. Thus, it makes sense to use names to reflect a character’s personality.

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Creating that “Killer” Character

A Writer's Path

by Georgio Konstandi

“I shall not exist if you do not imagine me.”   – Vlamidir Nabokov, Novelist/Poet (1899-1977)

From Blanche Dubois to Ebenezer Scrooge, literature has never failed to produce characters that resonate with millions of readers from across the globe. But where did they come from? What ignited the first wisps of smoke of these authors’ imaginative infernos? How do we, as modern-day writers, emulate such success when we sit down, a blank screen before our eyes, fingers at our keyboards?

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Why Characters Get Out of Hand and Understanding Them Better

A Writer's Path

by Destine Williams

It’s only 8:20 AM and the battlefield is quiet.

A lone tumbleweed rolls across the barren land just like a blockbuster western, but today you’re not here to stop and smell the cliches.

Today you are here to fight.

The only ones left in the resistance are you, your editor, a handful of beta readers, and Joe, but Joe’s Wednesday schedule is sketchy so he might have to leave early.

And it’s all of you (Joe being tentative) versus your novel.

You survey the land quietly. The wind kicks up dust and in the wake of it you see something moving. You squint.

What is that?

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