Ask the Author–What is Your Favorite Thing About Writing?

It’s December, and the holidays are in full swing! However, this post has nothing to do with the holidays, unfortunately. It’s time for an Ask the Author post. This month I will reveal my very favorite thing (if I really have to pick) about writing.

What is your favorite thing about writing?
I like a lot of things about writing. I love building the world of Aviandria. It isn’t quite as big as Middle Earth or some of the other fantasy realms, but it is big enough, and there are so many different aspects of it to explore. I also love coming up with stories and seeing where a vague idea of a scene (which is how a lot of my stories start) builds to become an entire plot, then matures into a story. However, if I have to pick one thing, I would say it is probably the characters. I love coming up with characters.

I guess that’s not that different than my real life. I’ve been a fair number of places, and I’ve left a piece of my heart in more than one. However, it isn’t the place itself that usually captures that piece of heart. It’s usually the people that I met in that place. Characters are very much the same. For me, they are the heart and soul of a story. A story can have an awesome setting and an engaging plot, but if I don’t really like or care about the characters, it still won’t hold my interest.

When I start writing stories, my characters are closer to acquaintances, but as I write, I learn things about them. It is kind of a gradual thing, just like it would be in real life. Just like in real life, get down what they look like really fast. I soon learn whether they tend to be quiet or like to talk, and I usually know whether they are likable or not. The longer I spend with them, the more I learn about them. I learn small favorites. I learn about their more personal hopes and wishes. I learn why they are the way they are. Sometimes I even learn what they are really afraid of, and am able to glimpse some of their personal struggles and triumphs from their pasts. I learn about their strengths and their weaknesses. (Yes, even my favorite characters have them, even if they are somewhat hard to find.) They go from being acquaintances to friends, and then to close friends at that point. Even the bad guys. I don’t really like them, and I guess I wouldn’t be able to call them “friends,” but I still feel a connection because I have spent so much time learning about them.

And before anybody starts wondering about my sanity, yes, I know fully well that they aren’t actually part of this real world. I do know where reality starts and ends, but sometimes they can feel real to me. Letting them come alive like that can really help me write them in the story because the better I know them, the better I know what they would do. Characters are really what bring my stories to life. They are generally where I spend the most time and have the most fun when I’m doing any side development with my stories. The characters are even able to show me things about the setting that I wouldn’t know otherwise. They are pretty cool. As much as I love everything about writing, I would have to say, they are kind of the thing that makes me love it the most.

What’s your favorite thing about reading (or writing)? Do you like the plot, the setting, the characters, or something else best?

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