Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wednesday's Writer's Tip - Maximizing Your Strengths - Emotional Involvement

You've just decided to become a writer or you've been doing this for years and maybe need a bit of learning or reminding yourself of the skills. So let's look at what Dwight V Swain says in Techniques Of A Selling Writer. This is one of the books I use to remind myself about what things I need to hone my skills. "You must be capable of emotional involvement."

Just what does that mean? Everyone has emotions but becoming emotionally involved in the lives of characters is a bit different, yet each writer brings a bit of himself or herself into the mix. Not every writer touches every reader. If so there would only be one kind of writer. Think of the various kinds of stories out there and the way each writer taps into the emotions of the characters and the readers,

The words you choose are those chosen to bring feelings into the story. Without those feelings the stories fall flat. Stories arise from feelings. If you can't empathize with your characters, the stories will fall flat. It's usually easy to work with heroes and heroines and their emotions. This isn't necessarily so. We've all read stories where for some reason, either of these two main characters falls flat. For some reason, the writer hasn't an emotional connection to either one or to both.

Take the villain, male or female. It's a lot easier for the writer to have an emotional reaction to one of these. Why? We all love the ones we love to hate. For myself, writing villains comes fairly easy because my emotions are involved. Writing heroines also is usually easy because I can invest my feelings in their development. Heros are harder, partly because I'm not a man but building feelings into them. I'm not one much for that macho alpha male and when reading stories with this kind of hero, they often fall flat.

So when choosing your characters you have to feel for and with them. What about you? Are some characters easier for you to relate to?


Melissa Keir said...

I also love to write the bad guys, but I agree that it's easier to fall for a character when you have the emotional connections.

Sandy said...

In some ways writing the hero is not as hard as for some writers and that's probably because I worked with mostly men.

I can write a good villain and anyone who has read my book, Addiction, knows that. I know of no one who figured out the bad guy until the end. lol

Emotions are a little harder for me to write, but I'm going to think about what you've said about the emotional involvement.