Posts tagged Writing

Semi random blurt #03

There is a saying that goes: “There is nothing new under the sun” which is more or less true depending on how harsh you are with defining what’s new. This saying will have importance to this SRB.

I think it was back in 08-09 it all happened. I was going to create one of my first original characters (don’t steal ‘kay!(will use the term OC from now on, to be more like the cool kids)). You might already now where this story is going but please keep reading anyway. The reason this was going to be a big deal, at least for me at the time was the fact that it was for a RPG forum. I think it was called “Desert world” or something along those lines. It was going to be my first “public” OC and not only that, I would have to role-play it.

From the start I was suffering from illusions of grandeur, my ambition was to create a totally original OC that was going to become famous on the forum, a main protagonist of sorts. A Wolverine to the X-MEN/Marvel universe. Even if Wolverine isn’t the protagonist of everything or even a main player, everybody knows of him. I wanted to create my own Wolverine. So as I said, my ambitions were high. But as with all great tales (not really) it was doomed to fail from the very start.

My character was going to have the ability to cancel out other peoples abilities, he was going to be an orphan due to murdered family but survived by luck, be happy go-lucky but with a dark past (see what was written before the last comma) and he was going to have a evil creature bound to his body. See, only original traits… at least I thought I was original while creating him.

As I was making the most groundbreaking OC ever seen by this cruel, cruel world I looked through characters that other people had made, to see my “competition” and get inspiration. Whilst going through some characters I stumbled up on a character which had almost the exact same background story, though powerless and whiteout an evil entity tied to his body. But this shattered my innocent mind. I was a rip-off! I was not the creator of a superbly unique OC. I was at most mediocre. This made me sad, very sad and ashamed. So ashamed that I quite the forum without even finishing my character.

So what is the point of this story? For me it was to realize that I ain’t unique and special even though my mother says so. It was also when I realized that no matter what I make, there will be similarities with other things, that came before or which will be created at the same time. And it is something we just have to accept. ‘Cause even if something isn’t completely 100% original, that doesn’t mean it’s bad. If you are making a stereotype, just make sure to make it in to YOUR stereotype and be proud and happy that you made something. Originality comes with practice and time, we need to stumble and fall a few times before we can create the real OC’s.

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Metaphors?

Why do we use metaphors? We could just plainly state what we want to say or write. “He kissed the girl”

See, that wasn’t so hard. Now there is no confusion. But seriously, why do we use them. A metaphor could just become waste of space and ink in story, the bad ones at least. A good metaphor enhances events, or rather the description of them. If we take the example, “He kissed the girl” and add “like a mother kisses her child”, the kiss will be totally different.

We use metaphors to enhance a event/description/thingymajingy by calling upon a “common” source of knowledge. Another example: “His eyes, brown as a young doe’s, sparkled in the light”. So here I used a metaphor (or maybe it is a simile, not totally sure, English is hard sometimes) to describe the color of a person eyes. I could have written, light brown instead, but because I used “[…] as a young doe’s […]” I call upon a common source of knowledge. By common I mean knowledge that most people should know, just to clarify. A person who reads this will probably think that his eyes are very beautiful and maybe innocent looking, because of what we associate does with, now for another example, but this time of a “bad” metaphor.

“His eyes, brown as a cesspool, sparkled in the light”. If this was used to describe beautiful eyes… it failed miserably. It would probably be a bad metaphor to use in most situations when describing the color brown, unless of course you want a disgusting brown. Than it would be a good metaphor.

Why do I ask why we use metaphors? Because I think that you should question how things work, even if they are the right way to do something. ‘Cause if you do you might just learn something, like how metaphors work. Also I do it because I’m interested in storytelling and narrative and such fancy stuffs.

Enough of a detour, if we go back to the first example: “He kissed the girl”, this might seem like very plain thing to write. You could spice it up a notch or two by writing “He made love to her face with his orifice” or “He tasted her lips, warm with blood and sweet from cotton candy”. These two ways of writing “He kissed the girl” spice things up, creates some dynamic to the event and also sets a certain tone to the whole thing… and it is also the reason why “He kissed the girl” can be a very good way to describe the event. If for example, the story is from the “He’s” perspective and it just says: “He kissed the girl” and nothing more is added. It can give us readers something to think about and some smart depth. Was it so that he actually didn’t think the kiss was anything special, maybe he doesn’t love this girl that he kissed. That is the problem with writing, there is no right way to do things, how bothersome… well not really, but since no real “right or wrong” exist, how will you know that what you write is “right”? (Dunno, don’t care, give me more chocolate)

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