Very early this morning, I spent some quality time with Ricky Andrades in "El Encantado", the next story I'm finishing for my YA, Magical Realism collection which is coming out either in late September or early October. Yesterday, my goal had been to spend more time fleshing him and the side characters out, but I got busy with work, then making dinner for the kids and my husband. Asi que, this morning at around 12:30a.m., the writing bug woke me up, so I spent time writing a description of him, which I needed to do.
He needed more fleshing out, so I reverted to an exercise I teach in my creative writing class, 10 truths, 10 lies. You can list more, but essentially, you list these qualities or untruths about your characters. Below are the description, main goals, and lists:
10 Lies and 10 Truths about Ricky Andrades:
Height: 5 foot 8 inches.
Build: Thin and muscular.
Hair: Curly, sandy brown.
Eyes: Dark brown.
Skin: Darker than his peers.
Face: Sculpted and handsome.
Voice: Deep and slightly musical.
Main Desire: To play professional baseball and go out with his neighbor, Sarah Isabelle Stan.
You can also add 10 odd facts, but I don't bother. Anyway, after I did the exercise, I was able to carry on with the writing, and it flowed well.
And that is all the time I have this morning! I have to work on Union business and organize chapter finances, when I would rather be writing.
Oh, I do have one bit of good news. I was talking to another faculty member who teaches creative writing, and she is going to organize a monthly gathering of other faculty who are writing novels or chap books or whatever creative form. I am so excited! I found out one of my colleague is working on a fantasy novel, which just goes to show, you just don't know where there might be a secret writing life.
Today, hammer out your characters until they are sculpted to your satisfaction. #barrioblues
Dr. Jesú Estrada,