Has anyone ever created characters that you just can’t let go?

My first year of NaNo was my first foray into novel-length writing. I came up with to lead characters, strong-willed, emotional Luciana, and reserved, level-headed Delaney, the main characters of my novel Curse of Ancient. They started out with relatively set personalities that didn’t change much throughout the story. I finished the novel, and beat the 50,000 word count goal. I liked the story. I liked the ending. And for me? That’s saying a lot.

Two months later, when I was beginning the editing process, a virus made my way into my old laptop. Everything had to be wiped. I had been able to print out probably about 80% of my novel, but I lost my ending. To say it was discouraging is a bit of an understatement. So I put the novel aside. I started on a different novel that November, and beat the goal, but never finished the story. I loved the characters I had created, but it just didn’t feel the same.

So I started editing a few of the chapters of Curse of Ancient. Just a few pages at a time, and it reminded me how much I loved those characters.

That’s the way it’s gone for the past two years. I’ll put the novel aside, work on a different project, but I’ll always come back to Luciana and Delaney. When I got stuck on last year’s NaNo, I pretty much scrapped the entire story and went back to writing shorts about my two other characters. And by this point, they had changed. They’re still the same characters, but so much better. There’s depth to their personalities now.

Even when I’m still working on other projects, I still love these characters so much.

I’m so glad that I didn’t just forget about these characters. I don’t know that I’ll ever go back and rewrite the end to their original story, but I’m certainly not done writing with them. Rediscovering these characters and how great they are has been one of my favorite parts of writing so far. It makes me curious if anyone has ever had a similar experience with characters that they’ve written? Are there characters that you just can’t seem to let go of?

Cheers!

Chelsea

A Poem and Other Odds and Ends

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Cover image for Scarlet Starlet

        So, I finally finished a poem that I had on the back burner for sometime now. There’s actually a bit of a story behind it. I had one NaNo idea last year, a novel called Scarlet Starlet, that was supposed to be set in the late 1910′s – early 1920′s. It was supposed to be about a young woman who came to NYC searching for fame on the stage. She would have gotten it, but for a price, of course. The poem was supposed to be written to the main character from a love interest/ childhood sweetheart. The novel has pretty much been scrapped, but I still like the idea.  Also, free-verse is very rare for me. Really rare.

Scarlet starlet, who are you?

Where is the girl you left behind?

Did you leave her in that field,

Dancing in the summer sun?

Or is she still there under the stars

Laughing free, without a care?

Scarlet starlet, who have you become?

Look at yourself, who do you see?

Your face is familiar, your voice the same,

But the smile is different, the laughter gone,

Swept away by the flashing lights,

Buried by the weight of the stage.

Scarlet starlet, are you happy?

Is this life all that you dreamed?

The lights, the glamour, the promise of fame

Is it worth changing your name?

Surrounded by your admirers,

But can you call them friends?

Scarlet starlet, look around you,

Can you see the illusion for what it is?

Promises of loyalty,

Declarations of love.

But where will they be,

When the sun sets and the star falls?

Scarlet starlet, do you remember,

The words that you once said?

“This is my chance, the only chance,

Be happy for me please?”

How can I be happy for you,

When you’re miserable for yourself?

Scarlet starlet, come back home,

Leave the lies behind.

The glitz and glamour will not last,

The false friends will not stay.

But I will always love you

If you ever again glance my way.

        Also did some minor character work last night.  Got last names down, a family tree started, and even had some plot points jumped up and make themselves known. Still trying to do some world-building/ setting history, but I don’t expect to have that set until sometime tomorrow.

        Tomorrow is the NaNo Kickoff Party for the Knoxville Region! Yea! 5 days left!

        Cheers!

        Mayuuya (Chelsea)

The Beginnings of New Characters

Originally Posted on September 26th, 2013

For someone who prides herself on being very organized, I’m not so good at organizing the beginnings of a new story. Am I the only one who’s story notes look like I let my 2 year old niece loose with a pen and some paper? Surely I’m not. I hope. This is what my inital notes for characterizaion look like.

Actually, I’ve made worse messes on paper. My biology exam, for example. That was messy…

Yeah, not so pretty. On the other hand, this is probably be best early characterization I’ve done in a long time.

Clearly, I don’t always pick the best time to work on my stories… But on the other hand, it was a lot more interesting than the functions of mitochondria.

They create ATP, just in case anyone was curious. I did catch that. I just don’t know exactly what ATP is…

EDIT: ATP is energy. It was on the exam…

Cheers!

Mayuuya (Chelsea)

Notice the top right corner~