My grandfather passed away in October.
I’ve already written about it and link to it incessantly. It’s been ruthlessly on my mind since it happened, and I’m still trying to process the whole event. I don’t know that I’ll ever really stop processing it. I hope not. But I digress.
Building a person is a long and complicated process.
In the real world, it takes twelve to twenty years to really solidify someone’s personality, and we never really stop building on that. In fiction, it can take anywhere from a single line to an entire novel’s worth of notes to get an idea of who the hell you’re actually writing about. In other words: not easy. Fun, depending on the type of writer you are, but not easy.
I’ll admit it, though, I’m not the type of writer to keep copious notes on character-building. I have a ridiculously hard time sitting down and creating a framework to draw my story from (linguistics stuff aside). For me, at least, it’s a lot easier to let the characters figure it out for themselves.
Which means, rather than trying to build the character’s personality up bit by bit to the finest detail, you focus on what they want. And to learn what they want, you only need to ask a couple questions.
Hiatus is over! Holidays were wonderful, I love everyone, etc. etc.
New Year’s is a particularly contemplative time for me. Partially because it comes just after a time when you’re exposed to family members you usually haven’t seen in a while, partially because last New Year’s was so monumental for me. Not only did it mark the end of an awful year for me, I was facing an imminent move. I was about to be truly on my own for the first time, and I was moving a thousand miles from home.
I called it “breaking the metaphorical bone“: cleaning out your life to start over.
One year later, I’m happy to report it worked.