1. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    Get out of the Novel

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Charisma, Jul 19, 2008.

    I'm writing a novel nowadays, and I wrote my sweetest character's death the night before. It happened so that I went to a restaurant today. The background music was emotional, and voilà, I was at the verge of crying! I couldn't wish more than to really cry and then explain to my guests that I killed a man. :eek: Plus, I was hardly paying attention. I could imagine my characters walking around. :p

    My Question: Does this happen to you, and if so, any tips for getting out of the novel when doing other things?
     
  2. tehuti88
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    tehuti88 Contributing Member

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    This happens to me at times. I recall when I realized I would have to kill off a character in a story of mine; I was depressed for weeks. My brain kept railing against it and trying to think up ways to let her live because she and her partner have been through so much but I know she has to go. Likewise, once in a great while I get greatly emotional over characters in someone else's writing, though this doesn't happen that much since I tend to fixate on my own.

    Maybe you need to just give yourself "permission" to cry over this character? Really mourn them? Granted, when you're in private. :D I really can't think of any other advice. I think this might be because I suffer from depression but have gotten good at "hiding" it when others are around, then crying my eyes out when I'm alone! Perhaps that isn't so easy for other people.

    Anyway, even if that wasn't very helpful, I do feel your pain. :D
     
  3. Cheeno
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    Cheeno Contributing Member

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    It might help if you write a short story celebrating your character's life; all the positive things that happened to her and the effect she had on those she touched. Or, if you believe in an Afterlife, continue her journey through your writing.

    As with imagining your characters walking around, I see nothing particularly wrong or odd about it. Sometimes, when I'm out socially, I see a person I immediately compare with a character I'm working on. Unfortunately, staring after them has got me 'warning' looks, so I tend to go up to them now and tell them why I'm giving them my undivided attention (it's all research:)). It's usually taken in a good spirit and, more often than not, enhances how I perceive my character.
     
  4. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    Thanks both of you :D As soon as I'm done with a novel, I guess I'll write a short story. As for a pronto arrangement, I'm going to cry it out with some tissue papers around me. :redface: It's always good to know I'm not the only one.
     
  5. Gone Wishing
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    Gone Wishing Contributing Member

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    Most people look at me funny when I describe how I am affected by certain characters of mine. They've been part of an ongoing 'saga' for a number of years now and as my creations they are pretty much like family... :redface:

    When one of their dramas get a little overbearing, I switch perspectives between them, and explore the emotions/events through another character....

    :)
     
  6. Heather Louise
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    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yes, this happens to me a lot, I get myself overly attached to my charectors in things I write, and find myself thinking about them as real people from time to time. I have no suggestion of how to change that unfortunatly, expect that whole, trying to push it to the back of your mind technique. If you figure somethig out that workds though, let me know. :p
     
  7. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    After I wrote the death of the daughter of my MC, I was horribly depressed. I went around for a long time being very unhappy and crying at random intervals.
     
  8. Daniel
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    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

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    Honestly, I can't say that's every happened to me. At least not to that extreme. ;)
     
  9. Speedy
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    Speedy Contributing Member Contributor

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    I can’t say it’s actually happened to me yet, as I haven’t gone too far in writing. But I have read a few novels that have shattered me, made me cry and made me think about the character for a week or two and made me want to shake the author for a bit. But it if wasn’t for moments like those, reading and writing wouldn’t be half as fun in my opinion.

    If I happen to be in your shoes, id be excitedy. To be able to create something that plays with your emotions and takes a few moments away from your daily life is pretty good. I’m not sure how far you want your book to go, but if you care enough about your characters and they can do this to you, maybe it can happen when otter people read your writings, being a good thing (if the character development has a nice ark etc)


     
  10. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    That'd be interesting! *takes notes*

    Lol, I'll hand you over my notes when I'm done. :cool:

    That never happened to me yet, considering that this death was of a side role - but he was still really sweet. :(

    That's all right, but when it will happen to you, you'll like it in a funny way. :p

    I guess you have a point there. Let's hope the reader sees it this way too!
     
  11. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've struggled with killing my characters. Sometimes I just don't do it. Sometimes I do it and find a way to bring them back. Sometimes I don't do it but write an alternate version where they do die to get the death out of my system. Of course sometimes I just gotta go ahead and kill the character off with no going back. With many characters, it stings a little.
     
  12. Risen Glory
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    Risen Glory Senior Member

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    This happened once to me when I was in a Role Play. Even in Geometry class I struggled to listen to the teacher, and my eyes looked outside, where my mind would be in story mode... It's a bad habit, and now I don't do it as much.
     
  13. mmorsepfd
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    mmorsepfd Member

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    It's like living in two worlds at once, the story and real life. I have a hard time carrying on a conversation when I'm writing something good.
     
  14. Risen Glory
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    Risen Glory Senior Member

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    Don't forget the dream world... that world's a wonder.
     
  15. soujiroseta
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    soujiroseta Senior Member Contributor

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    i remember i once wrote a story where the protagonist was me on a page and he had a sister, Candice, who died in a car accident. i wrote this story when i was 17 and then a couple of months ago while walking through town i heard someone shout "Candice, stop!" i turned and saw a mother pulling her teenage daughter off the road. i almost teared up as the story i neglected came rushing back...too creepy.
     
  16. Sywo
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    Sywo Member

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    When I get upset by something in real life, my final, unwritten scene flashes through mind where the MC's partner dies, as well as the, now seen to be more innocent antagonist. 'Tis upsetting. :(
     
  17. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    Sometimes I think you just need to slap youself in the forehead and remind yourself that, as real as if feels, nobody actually died. As important as books and movies are, they exist to educate and entertain. Why take them so seriously?
     
  18. skip slocum
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    skip slocum Member

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    I am so glad to hear that this has happened to others maybe I'm not as crazy as I thought.
    When you watch a sad movie you have maybe 3 hours at the most invested in those characters. (not counting sequels)
    Reading a sad book maybe a bit more, BUT,,,
    when writing a story, each scene played in your head for a few hours before it was even rough enough to put on paper. (no I don't like that, re-write it)
    By the time you are through with a book: think, write, re-write, edit, edit, edit, read it through one more time, these people you created are friends and family.

    Ok who cries so hard while they are writing the death, they can't see the letters on the keyboard?
     
  19. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    I honestly never have cried while writing, but maybe after I write. Nonetheless, when I've been writing for nonstop through the night, I couldn't see the letters on the keyboard. :D
     
  20. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    Actually, I still have people who are really mad at me for killing this one character. She never spoke a word, just kicked a few times, and yet, they still were upset over her death. I will never understand it. I had her future figured out...until I "discovered" she was supposed to die!
     
  21. Risen Glory
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    Risen Glory Senior Member

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    That's terrible, Emily!

    Well... I usually don't think about my character much. It's weird, but I only think about him when I'm writing on paper or keyboard. It's like he's dead for most of the day, and then when I feel turned on and want to continue the story, BAM, he comes running at my face, begging me to describe him, to shape him, to create him...

    I have the feeling that I'm not devoted enough to my story, if I only think about it when I'm writing.
     
  22. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    Nah, you're lucky. I can't do anything without involving some of my characters in the experience.

    And how is it terrible? It was kinda sad for me. I had so many plans, like, I knew everything about her. Then my stupid idea-bouncer was right, and I killed her. (he has my writing down to a science. I'm not joking. He's never even read it, and you can quiz him on the characters/plot/etc etc)
     
  23. Ladder Writer
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    Ladder Writer New Member

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    I think it's an incredibly good sign that you are getting so attached to your characters - if you believe in them then the readers will. If you're finding it too emotionally distressing however perhaps ensure you have two projects on the go at once - that way if you know one novel will lead to emotional distress you can turn to your more light hearted piece.
     
  24. illuminati
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    illuminati Member

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    I actually look forward to killing some of my characters...

    Someone once told me that the only difference between writers and serial killers are that writers have an outlet.

    Scary thought...
     
  25. That Guy From That Place
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    That Guy From That Place New Member

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    This has never happened to me... I've made characters who are tough as nails mourn another character's death, but never me personally.

    However, this does seem to be a growing phenomenon among writers as I've read many accounts of this. You can read them too, check pages 1 and 2 of this thread.
     

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