Friday, April 17, 2009

My dog ate my homework...

..as a kid. Lots of times.

I'm coming to you. Did you daydream? Draw? Write? Read? Did you try to stay away from it? There's a reason I'm asking. I'd like to know your process...how you flesh your ideas out...how you work as a writer to bring your story to the surface

I did many of the above, even before I was 'technically' a writer and it was okay to daydream. I was a problem in school because of my daydreaming tendencies, and no homework was turned in bare on the sides - I doodled and drew over everything. My school (back in the day, I am SO OLD) was way into corporal punishment and I got spanked like fury *all the time*. Horrible. 

So I'm looking for your opinions. How did you handle your imagination? **

**Sorry this post is so short. I am at the end of a first-draft MS my agent is very excited about, as am I, and it obsesses me.

6 comments:

  1. Reading. I was always in trouble for having my nose in a book. I could do pretty much anything with one hand holding the book. Walking wasn't particularly successful, but who cares? I travelled further in my head anyway :)

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  2. I usually begin with characters that rise in my imagination, then I try to "discover" their story. Sometimes a story just comes, sometimes I daydream one up, sometimes I deliberately go fishing for one - scribbling notes and arrows over paper, playing with ideas visually.

    But now that you bring up doodling - I've always done that. I still do that at work, even today, during meetings.

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  3. notenoughwords - I feel you, totally. Reading made it the worst, because then I'd be thinking about the story and not maths. I hate maths.

    Diane - I'd be very interested to hear this! Characters first, how cool! I usually see a situation and then the characters come, but not before. They're always second.

    That is so cool!

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  4. Since my books are about the unintended consequences of a new technology, I have the technology in mind, and usually the ending. I then try to come up with some interesting characters to fit into the story.

    With the end in sight I build the story of how the characters got there.

    Of course along the way, characters change, the ending changes, sometimes even the technology morphs into something different, all in the name of making the story more believable and more interesting.

    The ending is usually a an unexpected twist, but as I said, sometimes I get twisted another way that's even more interesting.

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  5. Your mention of day dreaming and school took me back to the days, and years, that I was more interested in what was happening out the window than what the teacher was saying.

    I day dreamed amazing and beautiful things. I also day dreamed about wars.

    I wasn't much rewarded for my day dreaming until creative writing class when I wrote about a leaf I had actually been daydreaming about just moments before the assignment.

    I wish that I could day dream like I could when I was a kid. It was alive and real.

    I read a post awhile ago where the adult writer says, "I am ten." Loved that post, cause I believe that writer was able to day dream like a kid again.

    Thanks for the reminder about daydreaming.

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  6. I don't think I handled my imagination. My imagination handled me.

    I'd daydream all the time in school, doodle as I thought of faraway places and characters that I would love to meet and spend time with. Kind of like having imaginary friends.

    I would tell my sister stories every night before bed, making them wilder and wilder as I went along. And I would do them in parts, making her listen (as though they were chapters)each night for over a week before the story was ever finished.

    I think all those ideas and new worlds and people finally got to be too much for my mind and I had to eventually write them down.

    It's funny how forgetful I am about things sometimes. Forgetting times of appointments or when to pay my bills. But I never seem to forget about stories I've thought up. I suppose those characters and settings are so vivid in my mind that I can't lose them as easily.

    What a fun post!

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