dhamphir (dhamphir) wrote,

Writing Meme!

I did this meme about 2 and half years ago. I decided to do it again after a recent discussion with a friend. I was surprised at how many of my answers changed.

1. Tell us about your favorite writing project/universe that you've worked with and why.

Weak in the Knees will always have a special place in my heart since it was my first. However, I have to say that my favorite universe is the one from my recent NaNo project. It's is my first real attempt at an original novel. I have no known canon world or characters to lean on as I do when writing fanfic or even uber fic, so it's a new kind of challenge for me. I did manage to win NaNo, but the story itself is a long ways from done, so it's an ongoing project.

2. How many characters do you have? Do you prefer males or females?

I'm not even sure how to answer this, because I've introduced original characters, major and minor, into fanfic, and in my novel all of my characters are original. I've also created numerous characters in the shared story world Tales of Ryh'na. I've created male and female characters, but I definitely prefer females. I am a lesbian after all. *S*

3. How do you come up with names, for characters (and for places if you're writing about fictional places)?

This is one of the things I struggled with for quite a while, until I stumbled upon a useful random name generator, or rather, several generators.

4. Tell us about one of your first stories/characters!

My first fanfic was the novel length X-Files fic Weak in the Knees, which starred my original character Jessica Morgan as Dana Scully's love interest. Jess is an amalgam of a few characters I've had in my head for a long time. In my personal canon, she's as complete a character as Scully. She has a pretty interesting biography, pieces of which were brought to light in Weak in the Knees and then further explored in the prequel Snapshots. She is driven; flawed; human; something other than human; comes from a dysfunctional family; has known love and heartbreak, hope and despair; comes from privilege, yet has burdens to bear. I like Jess, and she pretty much wrote herself. I hope she sticks around for a while.

5. By age, who is your youngest character? Oldest? How about "youngest" and "oldest" in terms of when you created them?

In terms of age, my youngest character is Julie Palmer. Julie is the daughter of Ellie Palmer (one of my main characters in my NaNo story) and is only a few months old at the beginning of the story. My oldest character is Kris Kay Fraiser from my SG-1 fic The Prophecy. She's over a hundred years old, but was born "tens of thousands of years ago." (Darn those time paradoxes!)

In terms of when created, my youngest character is Colleen Desanti, also from my NaNo story. And the oldest is Jessica Morgan in Weak in the Knees.

6. Where are you most comfortable writing? At what time of day? Computer or good ol' pen and paper?

I'm most comfortable in my bedroom. I write whenever I feel up to it physically (and when my muse is not on strike), but I tend to be more creative in the night hours than during the day. And I'd be completely lost without my laptop!

7. Do you listen to music while you write? What kind? Are there any songs you like to relate/apply to your characters?

Sometimes. When I do play music while writing it has to instrumental without vocals/lyrics, otherwise I find it distracting rather than helpful. I do have a certain playlist that I associate with Janet Fraiser, simply because I listened to it while writing several of my stories about her. Now, whenever I hear that playlist I automatically think of her.

8. What's your favorite genre to write? To read?

I would have to say sci-fi/fantasy/supernatural because I mainly write Stargate SG-1 and X-Files stories. It's also my favorite genre to read.

9. How do you get ideas for your characters? Describe the process of creating them.

I get ideas for stories and characters from all kinds of places, including dreams. Sometimes just a small snippet of dream can spark a critical plot point, or even an entire story. Frequently, I like to find a picture of the character before I start to write them. I usually use non-actor/celebrity pics because I prefer to not have any previous character(s) they've played subconsciously influence the character I'm creating. So I use royalty free stock images for my original characters.

10. What are some really weird situations your characters have been in? Everything from serious canon scenes to meme questions count!

Sarah Ryan, one of the main characters in my NaNo novel has an unwanted suitor/stalker who shows up. To help her out, her straight friend acts like her girlfriend and manages to put on quite a show while "publicly marking Sarah as spoken for." *G*

11. Who is your favorite character to write? Least favorite?

I'm going to separate this into fanfic and original fic.

As for fanfic, I can't name a single favorite character to write. Even though Janet Fraiser is my number one character love, I enjoy writing Dana Scully just as much. Least favorite to write? Hmm... Well, let's just say my least favorite character is Mulder.

In original fic, I think Sarah Ryan wins that distinction of being my favorite, but only just. Least favorite is Julie Palmer, because she's a young child.

12. In what story did you feel you did the best job of world-building? Any side notes on it you'd like to share?

I'm not really sure how to answer this one. In my fanfic the worlds are already there. My NaNo novel is a contemporary story set in the real world. And even though I've written two stories set in Tales of Ryh'na, I was but one person who helped to build that shared story world.

13. What's your favorite culture to write, fictional or not?

I don't know if it qualifies as a culture, but I enjoyed the elements of Dana's Malakim. After all, I got to combine angles, vampires, elves, witches, and malakims! That was a lot of fun. I'm also looking forward to further delving into the Ryh'nan culture in the Tales of Ryh'na, particularly of the Kelawi Clan.

14. How do you map out locations, if needed? Do you have any to show us?

For my NaNo story, I've spent quite a few hours going through real estate listings, Wikipedia listings, school and business websites, and more, to get a feel for where my character grew up, went to school, and worked. I've actually looked at neighborhoods on Google Earth, using different features to map distances to jobs, shopping centers, churches, hospitals, et cetera. Yes, I do realize it's kind of obsessive to do all of that, but it does help me get into the heads of my characters.

15. Midway question! Tell us about a writer you admire, whether professional or not!

Jazzy, aka jazwriter. I've known her now for over two years and Jazzy impresses me on so me on so many levels. She's a professional author, an active fanfic writer, a lawyer, an editor, a wife, a mother, one of the smartest people I've ever known, and a spectacular beta. On top of all that she always seems to be able to take time out to be there for her friends. Her fanfic has introduced me into fandoms and pairings I otherwise would not have read. She inspires me to be a better writer and a better person. I consider myself lucky to be counted as one of her friends.

16. Do you write romantic relationships? How do you do with those, and how "far" are you willing to go in your writing? ;)

I think it's almost impossible to not write romantic relationships when writing femslash. My stories go from G-rated to all the way to NC17, and everything in between.

17. Favorite protagonist and why!

This one is hard. I've stated numerous times that Janet Fraiser is my number one character love, but there something I find so compelling in Dana Scully. I really enjoying exploring the side of Scully we really didn't get to see on the show. In that way, she inches out Janet as my favorite. *S*

As for my original characters, I love both Jess Morgan and Nicole Logan. However, my current favorite is Sarah Ryan from my NaNo story. She's all too human. She's kind-hearted, has strong opinions, and is a workaholic. I like her. *S*

18. Favorite antagonist and why!

Mulder – I enjoy bashing him a bit. Probably a lot more than I should. But he is just so much fun to pick on. What else do you do with a paranoid, delusional, narcissistic psychopath? *lol*

19. Favorite minor character that decided to shove herself into the spotlight and why!

Right now it's Janice Danforth. She's an excellent ER doctor who also happens to be an instigator and troublemaker, especially if she's been drinking tequila. She has a heart of gold and is loyal to her friends. She's not above giving someone a fat lip if they've hurt someone she loves. Things are seldom boring with Janice around.

20. What are your favorite character interactions to write?

I like to write situations that cause the characters to look inside themselves, to evaluate who they are and what they want, and if necessary to change. I like writing couples that either come together or end up recommitting to each other as result. Guess I'm a hopeless romantic. ;)

21. Do any of your characters have children? How well do you write them?

Janet obviously has Cassandra, but I tend to focus on Sam and Janet. Perhaps because I've never wanted kids myself, I find it difficult to write from a parental point of view. This is why I was so surprised that my muse demanded that Ellie Palmer have a young child in my NaNo novel. It's been a struggle for me to incorporate Julie into the story.

22. Tell us about one scene between your characters that you've never written or told anyone about before! Serious or not.

Hmm... Kris Fraiser brings up the possibility of approaching the Asgard for help in making her and Janet's DNA compatible for another attempt to have a child. However, Janet is just not willing to risk Kris's health and wellbeing with another pregnancy.

23. How long does it usually take you to complete an entire story – from planning to writing to posting (if you post your work)?

Oh my, that really depends. It took me a little over five months to write Weak in the Knees. I put in 2-3 months of research for my NaNo story before I ever started writing, and that story is a long ways from done. I don't even want to think about the editing process yet. On the other end of the spectrum, I've finished short prompt fics in as little as an hour from the time I read the prompt.

24. How willing are you to kill your characters if the plot so demands it? What's the most interesting way you've killed someone?

So far I haven't killed my main characters. I really hated it when they killed Janet off on SG-1, so I tend to do the opposite – write stories that keep her alive.

On the other hand, I did kill off Mulder in Dana's Malakim – or rather he killed himself. ;) On a serious note, I did kill Cassie in Grief's Tragedy because is was the essential plot point in breaking Janet.

25. Do any of your characters have pets? Tell us about them.

Sam has Schrödinger which is canon; then I gave her Schrödinger Jr. Other than that, Nicole Logan has a small, white cat named Lyssa. Nicole and Lyssa are able to talk to and clearly understand each other.

There's a little fur ball that unexpectedly showed up in my NaNo story. So Sarah Ryan now has a kitten, although I don't know what his name is yet. *S*

26. Let's talk art! Do you draw your characters? Do others draw them? Pick one of your OCs and post your favorite picture of her!

I can't draw, period. However, I have been honored to have a couple of people be inspired enough by my stories to create book covers, a wallpaper, and even a music video!

Here's a picture of Sarah Ryan and one of Ellie Palmer, the two main characters from my NaNo novel.


27. Along similar lines, do appearances play a big role in your stories? Tell us about them, or if not, how you go about designing your characters.

With Jess Morgan, I pictured her in my head first. I was then lucky enough to find the perfect pictures of her. With Nicole Logan, I reversed the process. I went looking for a picture of her first, and then described her in the story.

For my NaNo story, I had a general idea of how my main characters looked, but I went looking for pictures of them a couple of months before I started writing. I actually changed the pictures for Ellie Palmer after I started writing, because the ones I had just weren't quite working for me. I'm much happier with the ones I have now.

28. Have you ever written a character with physical or mental disabilities? Describe them, and if there's nothing major to speak of, tell us a few smaller ones.

This is not an aspect I've delved into. I have written a story of Janet Fraiser having long-term issues following the events of Heroes 2; however, she did eventually overcome them. I do have character in an SG-1 story that has issues with one of her legs, but that story is unfinished. I've also written one short Birds of Prey fic featuring Oracle/Barbara Gordon. I'd like to follow up that story which would require me to delve further into Barbara's issues.

29. How often do you think about writing? Ever come across something IRL that reminds you of your story/characters?

I think about writing every day, even when my muse is in hiding. I'm not able to write everyday for physical reasons, but I do think about whatever story I'm working on every day. I can't think of any specific thing in real life that's reminded me of my stories/characters, but I often get ideas from dreams. ;)

30. Final question! Tag someone! And tell us what you like about that person as a writer and/or about one of his/her characters!

I'm not going to tag anyone, but I would be very interested to see other people's answers to these questions! :D

This entry was originally posted at http://dhamphir.dreamwidth.org/240151.html.
Tags: meme: 2013, writing

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