Sunday, August 14, 2011

I'll Probably Put You in a Book Someday

I need this shirt. I currently don't have a ton of money for my own personal leisure, but MAN! That's going on my wish list.

I have this weird little quirk about me (that annoys most of my sisters), where I'll see a person and go, "Oh. I have got to put this person in a book someday!!"

Because there are some pretty epic people in the world who would make for fabulous literature.

Three examples (all guys, strangely enough) would be Hank, from our youth group, who has the most expressive face and the most amazing sense of humor. Than there's two of my co-workers, who both have that amazing 'I'm an incredible person whose only working at this grocery store to serve you and make money for my unbelievably awesome dreams' vibe.

And than the random stranger, who has a great beard, an awesome hat, wicked combat boots, or just has this swagger that creates an entire personality for them in your mind!

As I get better and better at writing, I search more and more outside of myself for my characters. The plot can come straight from the depths of my soul, but if every character in my books come from me, they're all going to be cripplingly similar.

If you want to write, be observant. Notice random things about people that reveal their depth. Like the guy who locks his keys in his truck, and doesn't hesitate to climb in the back window and use a broom to hit the switch to unlock the door. Or the little old lady whose practicing giving a hard time on you for when her daughter gets home. Or the girl who holds an oven mitt with a teddy bear on it up to her face and asks if you see the resemblance.

People are amazing creatures. We all have the most obnoxiously delightful little quirks. There's only so much you can come up with on your own. For instance, in one of my books, the female main character, Georgie, is pretty much straight out of my brain and even crazier than I am. Her best friend, Cody, has little things about him from all of  my best friends, like his sarcasm his sense of adventure and his concern for Georgie. He is a much more complex and well-developed character than he would have been if I had just scrounged up a stereo-typical guy from my imagination.

I love character development. You get to write down all these little things about your character until you know everything about them, and half that stuff won't even end up in the book! And all those little things come from people...maybe even YOU.  Because I'll probably put you in a book someday.


  1. I'd be most honored to be in one of your future NY Times bestsellers someday :P