Since I finally took the time to finish reinstalling the important programs like Microsoft Word and Photoshop on my desktop, I decided to go ahead and do some work on the blog. There’s a new layout, nothing fancy really—just one of the predetermined layouts that the site gives you. There’s also a new page up there ^ entitled Keep Austin Safe. I’m sure you can all guess what that’s for.
If not, it’s just a preview of the first chapter of the Keep Austin Safe short story that I’ve been talking about on here forever. This isn’t how the story is going to appear in it’s final form as that is looking like it will mostly be in first person. But I felt that I needed a place to showcase this piece of writing for everyone to see.
One of the hardest bits when it comes to this short story is writing new people. I’ve written about the same set of characters for such a long time and thought of only them in terms of my story that when faced with these new characters it’s hard not to make them parallels of the characters that came before. A lot of authors and writers probably do this to some degree. Before the popular Naruto jumped what can only be describe as several sharks, there used to be some credibility for calling it a story about doubles, parallels and the bonds we make with others.
But for the characters in Keep Austin Safe I wanted to really make them stand on their own and to feel more like their own people. Some of them are meant to be foils for other characters in that same story, which is different than being a parallel, really. And at some point down the line they might actually be running into the characters from my other writing since they exist in the same world.
With my old characters, they grew over a long period of time. From around the time I was in junior high school until just a few years ago there was so much going on with those old characters. Most of it happened organically. They grew not because I was forcing them to through plot, but because I was learning more of what made someone a well rounded character. I was beginning to read more outside of my comfort zone and I was maturing myself.
This time around feels tougher somehow. It’s like being asked to come up with them all at once and write them makes them feel less legitimate even when I know they’re decent characters with interesting backstories. They might even turn out to be more well rounded than my first set of characters. There’s a lot of anxiety going into this round of writing; new characters and trying a new perspective seem to be the crux of it. But there’s other things too, small things. Like it’s so hard for me to find beta readers who just want to look over it and give their thoughts on what they read. I can ask and send it out and it seems like most people just sit on it and never give it a glance.
That’s probably a topic for another day, though.