Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Characters Emerge from Blobs

In the last few weeks, when I've had a minute or so, I paint a blob shape on some paper, and then try to make a face out of it.

This is a little game I learned from Carla Sonheim, whose website and books and online courses I highly recommend, particularly for sparking the imagination!

What I particularly like about this at this point in my life is this:  as a novelist, I am working on developing a new writing project.  I'm at the very beginning.  The blank slate stage.  I have some vague ideas.

But what I need are characters.  People who want things, and want them badly, for very good reasons, but who can't get what they want (or need) for a variety of challenging reasons.

So, this little blob imaginary people exercise helps me think about that.  The people appear in the blobs.  Or, more accurately, the characters who are already floating around in my imagination manage to find a way to consciousness through the blobs.

I've already had fun inventing stories about a few of them.

These four seem to go together in some sort of romantic comedy... that involves politically correct food.  Don't ask me why...

They do all seem rather grim in these sketches, don't they?  But somehow, their super seriousness is what them seem like they needed to be in a rom com.   Who knows?  Maybe an ongoing comic strip?  THAT would be fun!

This next batch generally seem a bit more pleased with life.  Should they be in a separate story?  Do they belong with the first group?

I don't know much yet about who any of these characters are, but I'm glad to have captured them.  I've taken notes in my journal about the story ideas they've inspired.  Maybe, just maybe, they'll help me work on my next stories!

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