Listening to the voices in my head

IS A HABITAre you a plotter? Are you a pantser? Do you listen to the voices in your head?

Unless you’re a writer those questions probably mean little to you…except that last one, if you’re not a writer and you listen to the voices please don’t tell me!

I tend to be a cross between the two, I have a lovely plot board covered with colored sticky notes with POVs and plot points for chapters, but I do leave myself plenty of room for the magic to happen organically.

I need to let the story unfold as I write, I need to be entertained along the way…because if I’m not enjoying the story as I’m writing, why would anyone enjoy reading it?

Hence the voices in my head.  I can hear my characters directing me, arguing with me if I go off track, or just babbling little bits and pieces about themselves that often help me push through a block.

I know lots of writers who interview their characters extensively before they even start writing, they know the hero and heroine inside out…for me this just gives me the hives. If I know all their secrets and what makes them tick before I’ve written a word, why do I care to write their story…I already KNOW them. Boring for me!

I’ve been known to sit and stare into space, listening to the hero rant. I’ve woken up from a sound sleep because the heroine has revealed a side of herself that I needed to write down. But my favorite thing to do is to ask them why they did something! There is nothing more satisfying than humming along and you look at your words only to scratch your head wondering where that particular tidbit came from…the best way to find out? Ask!

What an awesome way to unblock a plot point or take a scene to a new level.

As writers there are a ton of tools available to us, but I don’t think there is anything more organic than hearing the voices, letting them guide you to write their story and letting the words flow through your fingers to the keys.

So, tell me…do you listen to the voices in your head?

About Debora Dennis

A believer in second chances and that time should never be an obstacle to finding love, Debora writes time travels with modern snark and spice! When she's not writing, she's spending time with her family, reading, or trying to figure out a way to get chocolate into every dish she serves.

Best Movie Mom: Aurora Greenway

20140506-231959.jpgMother’s Day being days away, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to talk moms, daughters, and characters.

I’m not sure how old I was when I watched Terms of Endearment. I think I was somewhere near being a teen and so it didn’t take much to   sympathize with Emma’s frustration about her mom’s ever-present criticism and the feeling that she’s never quite enough. For anyone.

I loved the movie, but I identified with it as a young woman and a daughter. I watched it again shortly after my own daughter was born, and experienced Aurora’s palpable grief at the loss of her daughter. Being powerless to save one’s own child, watching her suffer and praying for, if nothing else, relief for her daughter in death wrenched my heart. And then, realizing how incredibly foolish to believe that knowing her suffering was over would somehow make the loss any less like losing a piece of your own soul… well, boxes of Kleenex. Boxes.

Now, I have two grown daughters starting their own lives. Choosing careers, mates, home decor–regardless, I walk a tightrope to be supportive enough, helpful enough without stifling them or making them feel I don’t think that their choice is the absolute best choice. It is, for them; a distinction I think Aurora missed. I also wonder of she might not have realized that her criticism caused the very thing she feared–that her daughter wouldn’t live up to her potential.

As a mother, I learned from this character how to accept my kids as their own people. And love them so much I can’t breathe. As a writer, Aurora is a complex character that either arcs to late or just in time. I’m not sure which. But, that’s not a slight against the writing; it’s a compliment because Aurora Greenway has kept me thinking all these years later.

About Lori Sizemore

Lover of nail polish, pens, her Kindle, and fresh coffee. She likes romance filled with messy, real characters and lots of snarky banter. Reading was (and still is!) her BFF; when she discovered writing she fell in love. Sassy humor for the heart, captivating contemporary romance for the soul.

  • OUR LATEST BUZZ!

    Lori Sizemore's Infamous released on December 14. *** Julie Jarnagin's Cowgirl in the Kitchen is available now. *** Bethanne Strasser LETTERS FROM HOME from Entangled Publishing is available now! *** Nina Croft's latest books, Her Fantasy Husband, a hot contemporary romance from Entangled's Brazen line, and The Order Boxed Set, a compilation of the three full length novels, plus a new novella, exclusive to the boxed set, both released in April 2016 *** Debora Dennis's holiday novella, CUPCAKES & CUPID is available.