At Home with the Migraine

Ugh.

Have I ever told you how much I actually enjoy my day job? No? Well, I actually do. It’s a nice job, I’m good at it, and I enjoy the people. Not everyone can say that. Would I rather be at home writing full time? Of course. What artistic person does not want to support themselves with their craft.

Speaking of. I am up to five subscribers on my Channillo page. And I made a whole $3.47 for the month of September. Which just proves to me that I need to get my short story ideas developed so that I can start a second channel for my shorts.

So anyway, I’m here at home today and my head is freaking killing me. But I’m bored out of my mind so I’m browsing some bookmarks and what not.

My current project has a nasty villain in it, one I’m enjoying developing. Perhaps a little too much. I haven’t written anything for him yet, although I’ll share a smidge later that occurs right before his introduction.

Today, I am going a little off topic and sharing some great resources I’ve found lately.

First, let me share the blog I consider a MUST for creating your characters. Perhaps you are already familiar with MJ over at WritingGeekery? If not, acquaint yourself. Post haste. I have linked you to the Four Cornerstones article, which allows you to create the foundation of your character. If you follow her through these cornerstones on to the Four Pillars, it will be hard for your characters to fall flat.

I mean, you still need to get the dialogue right, of course. Sadly, I do not have any advice for writing dialogue. When I started writing a few years ago (I seriously think it’s been 4 years now), I was terrified of dialogue, so I forced myself to write JUST dialogue. And now it is a natural part of my writing.

Back to my villain. I don’t want a flat villain. So I approached him as if he were the protagonist (because the best writing advice regarding the antagonist that I ever read says that he is the hero of his story), and used the above site to create a full character description for him.

And then I found this blog, so that I could add more depth to my understanding of writing villains and using scary settings, etc…

Want to know what I found? Just by going through MJ’s series, I hit all those spots already. No two-dimensional caricature for my villain. Still, go through all of it. Perhaps you might even spend more time on your antagonist than your protagonist.

And now, for that tidbit I promised, since you stuck around this long. This is a spurt that came to me in bed last night. As with all I share, ’tis a rough draft.

Sarah came awake with a start, her heart thundering in her chest. The night carried a warm breeze through the open bank of windows, and with it, the cry of a raven.

Something was not right with the house. Something is *in* the house, she realized. The boards outside her room creaked loudly, and would alert anyone, preventing her from creeping to investigate. And what would she do? Curse at them in all known languages? She had no skills with which to protect herself.

Her attic room was barren; an attempt by Lady Rickings to remind her she was staff. There was not even a handheld mirror through which she could travel the house.

There was nothing she could do except lie in her bed like a useless coward while some stranger waltzed through Rushmore House. Her home, she thought (anger).

Was it a thief, intent upon finding items to sell? They would find little here, for the Rickings had little of value beyond the contents of her office.

Was it the killer so often mentioned in papers? She cowered deep under her thin blanket, fear freezing the rational part of her brain. Would they find her lifeless body when she did not appear to break her fast?

A slight rustle of movement caught her attention. Someone was awake besides her and the intruder. Closing her eyes, Sarah reached out, searching the aether until she found the tendril she sought. Three rooms down, Molly was awake. Was the intruder in her room?

Making the connection was quick, easy. Molly had no shields to keep others out. Before she could hitch in a new breath, Sarah was seeing through Molly’s eyes.

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