Saturday, May 10, 2008

How do you see your stories?

What I’m Reading: Great Expectations by Charles Dickens and Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn (I previously started this but had to set it aside to read an ARC of Madapple, which needed comments by a certain date. I’m glad to be back to Silent in the Grave. I like it a lot.)

What I’m working on: Rewriting Slayer from the beginning – it’s a whole new and better story. I'm still not to the point yet where I'll be able to use some of the old stuff I've already written, but I'm getting closer. Right now, it's all new words and ideas.

Word count today: TBA

A while back I took a voice class. A lot of what I wrote in that class came out in first person. It wasn’t a conscious decision to write in first person. We were given a prompt and 5 or 10 minutes to write without editing – just write.

A majority of my pieces were first person which seemed weird since my stories are in third. At the end of the class, the instructor gave us a final analysis. In mine she suggested that first person might be really powerful for me and that maybe I should try it.

Of course, I blew it off.

But recently I experienced a revelation: When I make up stories in my head, I’m ALWAYS the protagonist. I always see the story through my own eyes – as if it’s happening to me. It’s not like I’m watching a movie and the characters are on screen. I AM the character. How did I not realize I’ve always made up stories where I’m the star? And why have I always converted them to third person instead of first?

This revelation inspired me to begin rewriting my current WIP (which was finished, but so NOT polished) in first person. And that changed the story – ALOT.

In the end, I think this new version will be better. However, it got me to wondering how other writers see the stories in their head.

How do your stories come to you? Do you envision them like a movie scene in your mind? Is it a role where you star? Have you really ever noticed? How does that translate into your writing?

Post your ponderings. I really want to know.