The reasons for this blog: 1. To provide basic author information for students, teachers, librarians, etc. (Please see sidebar) 2. I think out loud a lot as I work through writing projects, and I'm trying to dump most of those thoughts here rather than on my friends.

Monday, January 24, 2011

I spent a lot of the past semester harping on students understanding their secondary characters' arcs. And I just spent--I swear--three hours worth of workshop sessions harping on secondary characters' arcs. I had planned to do a single one hour session on secondary characters, but then realized how important it was, so I tried to give everybody as much time as they needed to get their own ms thought out and talked out on the secondary level. I let the topic run from session to session till we flat ran out of time.

Then I was talking to a student about the dystopian ms, and Student asked where my secondary character X was during the climactic scene. I gaped for a moment, then realized I had no idea where X was during this pivotal moment. Then I realized character X was probably actually present in the scene. Then I realized I don't know what he's doing or thinking or wanting or dealing with, from somewhere around the middle of the book through the end. I also realized I never figured out exactly what was in his head before the book began--the exact steps he took that brought him into that very first scene, and why he took each one.

I've been pushing everybody else to get their secondaries considered in depth, and that has often seemed to help them get a bead on their stories--yet it somehow slipped my notice that my main secondary character (the one the book is named for!) is still pretty much a blank. D'oh!

Much thinking to do. Must finish two overdue w-f-h scripts, though, so no writing for now. Just thinking, when I can.