1. Lunatia
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    Lunatia Member

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    A character promoting himself?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Lunatia, Feb 13, 2013.

    I started on a story recently and had my main character all lined up. I vaguely know where the story is going and who should be in it. But a character just popped up out of nowhere from the very first chapter to talk to my main character and I realised today that this very minor character promoted himself. He's the main character of the story now! I didn't even get a say in it. :confused:

    Is this at all normal for a writer or am I (finally) going completely bonkers? Also, should I allow my characters to do what they like or must I have a certain amount of control? Feel free to tell me if I've lost all my marbles, at least then I'll know for sure. ;)

    (Sorry if this topic comes up a lot. I tried searching but can't seem to properly work the search function.)
     
  2. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    Writers often don't get a say in what happens. Happens to me all the times.
     
  3. Darkkin
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    Darkkin Reflection of a nobody Contributor

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    This is what good characters do, your writer's instinct doing what it is supposed to do. Go with it, don't fight for control. You can always return to the original character, but allow this to play out, see where it leads. There are a lot of writers out there, who wish their characters would do this. :D For now, go with the flow, you might be surprised where you and your story end up.
     
  4. Lunatia
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    Lunatia Member

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    Phew! Thank you, Show and Darkkin. I feel much better now. :D I guess writing is a lot like dreaming, creating and discovering at the same time. I'm definitely going to write on and see what happens next.
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    pardon me, but that's pure poppycock... it's YOU doing it, not the character... so, give yourself credit for having created the character and noticing where it 'wants' to go, what it 'wants' to do...
     
  6. Lunatia
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    Lunatia Member

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    I'll do that. Thanks, mammamaia! :D
     
  7. AchiraC
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    AchiraC Member

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    No, you still have all your marbles. I had a minor character in one story demand I rewrite the whole thing to make him the main character. He was right. *sigh*

    Some of my best scenes and characters just sneaked up on me. My absolute favorite scene was the one I wrote when I was bone-tired, but my fingers just kept typing and typing. No idea were the thing was going, but it turned out to be a pivotal scene for the whole story. Now I just go with it when it happens and enjoy the results!
     
  8. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Mammamaia is right - the character didn't do it, YOU did it.

    What happened to you is common. You started off with an idea in mind, and as you wrote, you had a better idea. Your new character turned out to be more interesting than your original character, so you started writing about him. You are now writing a better story.

    For me, this is one of the most wonderful things about writing - new ideas come along all the time as I write, and often these new ideas are better than the ones I started with. This is one of the main reasons I don't outline. If I worked from an outline, these new ideas would be stifled.
     
  9. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    If it happens, just go with it. Unless you really feel like it's going too far. While sometimes you have to reel your characters in, having the story write itself is often a very good thing.
     

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