Monday, February 06, 2012

He Needs Your Help

Who is he?

You don't recognize him, do you?  You should.  All he's asking for is some recognition.

You grew up with him.  

What happened to him?  Oh my, you really are out of touch for a writer, aren't you?  He's a character in your latest book.  

I'm afraid you've fogotten the true source of your stories.  Let's try another test.

Recognize her?

Oh, no! 

How could you forget her?   She could use a little recognition, too.  She's a character in your first book.  The one that got you noticed.  The one that made everyone think you could write like the love child of Jane Austen and John Steinbeck.

No?  Still doesn't ring a bell?

Have you forgotten where all of your great characters and great stories can be found?  I was afraid of this, so I'll remind you but don't tell anyone else or they'll end up being great writers, too.

Your childhood. 

Keep it to yourself.  Every great story begins in your childhood.

Think about it.

Every great character is someone from your childhood all grown up.

Really think about it.  It will improve your writing.  But don't tell anyone I told you.


Travis Cody said...

The seekrit is safe with me!

Rick said...

Travis, shhhh! Not so loud.

Miranda Hardy said...

Now I'm picturing my characters in thier younger years. Excellent exercise.

Rick said...

Hi Miranda- makes you wonder who became who, doesn't it? Around the time of Coleridge there was a belief that parts of different thoughts and perceptions would somehow merge in you mind when you either slept or slipped into reverie. In this way (which some referred to as involution), new ideas and characters would rise to your consciousness. It was thought to be similar to the way in which fine wine emerged from broken grapes.

Wow. That was long, wasn't it?

Charles Gramlich said...

I'm working on a story now that literally starts in my childhood. Writing the first part of it really brought back some memories, pleasant and unpleasant.

Rick said...

Those are sometimes tough on the soul to write, Charles. On the other hand, they are so rewarding if you pull it off that they're worth the risk.

G said...

Alas, most of my stories have originated from my adulthood, flavored with the memories of where I'd lived and visited in my home state during my time on this planet.

Rick said...

That's the way I used to look at my stories, too, G. I wish I could say that I didn't my old neighborhood in my stories where I hadn't intended them to be, but now that I really look at them...

I have to read some of your work. Got a recommendation as to which is the best to start with?

sage said...

That is good advice and there were so many characters from my childhood and one of the reasons why I don't link my blog with my facebook is I've connected back to many of my childhood friends!

Rick said...

Gosh, Sage, I never thought about that.

L.A. Mitchell said...

After having just attended my 20th HS reunion, I like who these people turned out to be in my imagination much better than the pretentious snots they ended up ;)

Rick said...

I'm trying to imagine the scene when you realized your imagination was better than their reality, L.A.

Where is that video camera when you need it?

JR's Thumbprints said...

I choose the authenticity of my childhood over those damn credit card receipts and facebook. So ... where's the "like" button?