1. Taillin
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    Taillin Member

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    Hung up on the small stuff

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Taillin, Nov 3, 2013.

    Hey guys,

    I'm just wondering if I'm the only one who gets hung up on small 'unimportant' important stuff. things like city names, character names, even bloody street names. My current solution is to just power through it, but the tiny ewok sitting in the back of my head repeatedly brings it back up lol.

    I try to just insert place holder words (marked in red) until I later come up with something better.

    Any one else have this problem or any other solutions you use that are different?
     
  2. Edward M. Grant
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    Edward M. Grant Contributing Member

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    Pretty much. Unless it's important to the story, I mostly name characters by role when I'm writing, then rename them later.

    My Nano novel, for example, about an indie horror movie crew, currently has characters like Producer, Camera, Makeup and Werewolf #3. Others have had Boyfriend, Mentor and Father.

    That also helps to remind me of what each character is supposed to do in the story so I don't forget :).
     
  3. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Which is it? Are you hung up on all the small stuff or are you by-passing it 'till you think of something?
    Personally I do the latter - names of people and places are the least of my problems...
     
  4. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    I do what you are doing. Fortunately, I love the naming process. Sometimes, I strike the right chord straight away, sometimes I don't.

    Important question. Giving the small stuff too much thought can serve as a means to derail yourself. I'd say just keep on doing what you are doing, keep ploughing on ahead, and then substitute when ever you get your eureka moment.
     
  5. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    If it's not important to the story, I'll just write "(street)" or "(name)" or something like that until I have given it some more thought and can come back to that part. Sometimes it's not even until revision.
     
  6. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't get hung up on it. When I need a name I think of one fairly quickly. Just like with real people, the name/character grow to suit each other.
     
  7. ddavidv
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    ddavidv Contributing Member

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    I try to at least name my characters up front, because they are a PITA to change later. Some name themselves right off, while others need a half hour or more of looking at baby naming web sites.

    There is a dog in my current novel that I simply named 'Dog' in my outline. I've actually wound up calling it 'Dog' and made a back story explaining why.

    There is a movie The Driver from the 1970s where the characters are never named; they are simply referred to throughout as the characters they play, and it actually works. I'm sure it's been done in other films/stories.

    Place names...ugh...hate naming those. My novel occurs in a generic, unnamed city in the midwest which I imagine I will have to change after the first draft is complete. I've been thinking of using Haddonfield, Illinois as the town. Or, there's always 'Springfield' as on The Simpsons. :p
     
  8. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I don't generally spend a lot of time on such things, because they can always be changed later if need be. Obsessing on small details is a good way to disrupt your forward progress.
     
  9. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I'm using an ABC name holder system until I figure names out. Adama (because I started with a guy and decided a girl fit better in the role, Cece and Bet, two girls who are best friends with Emgee (which stands for mean girl) and so on. That way it didn't stop me from writing the story.
     

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