I remember when I was a child reading Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss. I loved the art, and I loved the flow of the writing. The words themselves were artistic in the way they were spun together.
Now that I’m grown up… writing science fiction, fantasy, and romantic comedies are all genres of writing I enjoy. In addition, I recently expanded my writing to contemporary dramatic works. A current example is an adaption of one of William Shakespeare’s plays that I’m turning into a modern novel. I’m not sure if I am making it a Nobel worthy work, or causing William to turn in his grave… but it is fun and challenging. Writing a novel that gets published is one of the goals on my Bucket List!
One of my favorite parts is creating character backgrounds. Especially the villains. A good antagonist can make the price of the book worth it. A good antagonist makes the movie ten times better. In comic books, many times a great antagonist is 100 times more interesting than the superhero! I suppose the same can be true about soap operas. Do I have a favorite villain? No. Probably just a villain with a motivation I can understand. Not motivation that I find inspiring… but something that I understand. I think that is my issue with disaster movies… because the villain is an earthquake, a Sharknado, an asteroid, or some other environmental threat. The special effects are normally good in disaster movies, but the drama… not always good.
Do heroes even really need to be that interesting or dynamic? Maybe they can be interesting. But I think the protagonist can normally get away with being somewhat normal (and relatable), and that protagonist reacts to all the challenges the villain throws at her/him.
Another favorite part of writing for me also involves the characters. I generally have a loose outline of where the story should go, but then I develop the characters… and I let the characters dictate where the story goes. To be honest this has been good and bad for me. Sometimes the characters take the story into impossible corners which turns the plot into a trainwreck. Thank heavens for the massive storage space in today’s modern computers and flash drives! Every story I write has multiple versions, incase I decide a trainwreck I created in Draft 3.0 now might be useful in Draft 9.7.
However… sometimes the characters I create are beautiful story tellers… and they take the story in a wonderful, unexpected direction. For example, I have written two endings for my current novel… and I’ll go with the ending which fits best in the finished novel. Mainly, it just depends on which ending makes the most sense for the characters. I know the outline, and where the story is going… but either ending could make sense at this point. And of course, by the time I am finished with the story… there could be a third ending which I haven’t thought of… an ending the characters have not revealed to me yet.
So what about you? When you write… what are your favorite parts of the writing process?