Make a list of all the things you love. No people or pets, just things. Give yourself about 5 minutes. When you're done, look for a common theme in your list. Does this say anything about you that you didn't already know?
Now try the same exercise for the main characters in your WIP. Across the top of your page list the names of at least three characters. Under each name, make a list of what each of these characters likes/loves/wants/needs. When you're done, look again for a common theme within each individual list. Circle the words that most stand out for you. Now look at each character's key words. How are the characters different? Alike? How can these traits better help you develop your characters? Have fun!
I sat down with my cup of coffee this morning at 5:45 to do Jo’s writing exercise. (Yes, it’s Tuesday.) Since it was early and the caffeine hadn’t kicked in yet, I’m not going to search for deep meaning in why I listed ‘shovel’ ahead of ‘baby books.’
Things … things … things I love.
After disqualifying loves ranging from “the ability to hear” to “sunscreen,” I tried to train my brain on concrete items, and I did limit my time to five minutes.
This is my list … UNEDITED (don’t judge):
reading light by the bed
camera (again? … um … half a cup of coffee, remember?)
old diaries and notebooks
I don’t think I’m cold and sterile to love my laptop so much. I love what it represents: everything.
I write on it … I store photos and music on it … I stay connected with family and friends and news of the world … it’s a portable miracle.
I don’t know my new WIP’s main character yet. (I haven’t even started writing yet.) I think he’s a boy. I had so much fun writing Blake … my previous MC … that I think I want to write as a boy again.
Here’s Blake’s list:
collection of comedy albums
Abbott & Costello movies on DVD
signed Lakers basketball from Magic Johnson era
photo of Shannon and him
poster of Emma Watson
This is the list for Shannon, Blake’s girlfriend:
trophy for 1st place at piano recital
Great-Grandma’s engagement ring
framed “Moonlight Sonata” print
china rabbit from pen-pal in England
photo of Blake and her
This is the list for Marissa, Blake’s friend-who-is-a-girl:
mini-fridge in her bedroom
childhood photo of intact family
Thanks for the warm-up, Jo!