Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Story Creation

What I'm Listening To: Poe - Haunted

What I'm Doing: Writing down this blog so that I can finally get some sleep.

The brilliant and famous J. K. Rowling (that's ROLLING, not RAOW-ling, for the record) said that Harry Potter was born the day he strolled into her head, fully formed. For some reason, (I don't know if this was ever mentioned anywhere, or if it's a figment of my own imagination) I always picture him walking into her head in his Quidditch gear. No explanations for that.

And recently, another author I've been speaking to (there are about a dozen, all told, so I couldn't say with exact certainty which one it was) said that her main character, Alex, also appeared in her mind, fully formed, and then pestered her until she wrote the story out.

I don't write this way.

For me, the stories themselves come to me, and then later, they tell me what kind of characters they'll feature. Vicky was born after Eversong created itself in my mind, and cried out for a hero from the human world. Mischief and Murder was brought to life in my mind as a forest ravaged by humanities atrocities, and then ravens and rats were brought in as the main characters because of the idea that sparked it's birth in the first place. (See "Inspiration In the Weirdest Places" for more details.)

After a two hour chat with a lovely group of Sarahs (Sarah Maclean, Sarah Ockler, Sarah Cross, and Sarah Rees Brennan) and some other fantastic people, I told myself I would go to bed at a decent hour. (IE, 11:30 ish, right after the chat ended.) But I found myself gripped by a powerful need to read fanfiction, so I went to my favoured fanfiction site, and dug around a bit until I found something to read. It wasn't enough, so I read another, somewhat longer fanfic. Which had a sequel. Which I then read.

It has sparked a third.

I am overwhelmed with a burning need to write a vampire story. It's lodged inside my chest like a column of flames. It will not rest until it has characters and a plot.

This is the last thing I need.

Oh, what sweet torture we create for ourselves. I am more excited than I could possibly say about this. I don't want it to be a rehash of Sunshine (one of the most amazing Vampire novels I've ever read; go read it now, even if you've already read it before. It bears rereading.) and neither do I want it to be as pithy and insulting as Twilight, which is a black smear across the good name of Vampire fiction.

I have the feeling it will be both of these and more. Not better, perhaps, but different. And until it is born, I am consumed in its flames. Being the creator of worlds is an immense, heady feeling.


  1. Interesting post. I have to say my characters come to straight away, full formed, and then I develop a story around them. But, each to their own!

    Thanks for posting,

  2. I agree with you, my story came to me and then the character was born to fit the events.

    And also, vampires own my soul. I give you my pity.