Monday, February 13, 2012
How do your characters reveal their secrets?
It's been such a long time and it seems I've lost the last three months to a big editing project at my job and the holiday frenzy. The good news is that I have been writing and actually had a short story of mine accepted into a local library's Anthology. A great accomplishment to begin 2012.
There's a story about this particular short story. It had gone through numerous revisions until the "story" became crystal clear. Or until I discovered how my characters would reveal their secrets.
First you have to unearth what secrets your characters are keeping. All characters have secrets. Then once you know what those secrets are, how will they be uncovered or not? I felt like I was digging and digging with this story, each time deeper and deeper to tap into the secret that was at the heart of my story. A secret I didn't get to until more than 8 revisions.
My one character happened to stumble upon the secret and wanted to explain it to the other character whom it impacted. But she, like many, wanted to stay in denial and then a crisis had to occur before she had to face the secret.
The creative process can be so magical. Each time I write, it is a different experience. What I plan to write soon goes somewhere unexpectedly. The characters take the stage and before I realize it, they are doing everything they can not to tell me their secrets.
I have to persevere and listen closely so they come forth with their remorse, truth, and hidden agendas. So how do your characters reveal their secrets?