How Do I Write “It”?

dogFellow writers, readers, stencilers, painters, sketch artists, graphic artists, scrapbookers, sculpturers, jewelers, poets, screenplayists, and all other creative muses! Lend me your ear/ideas/thoughts/minds.

I have been writing since I wrote my first love story with Paul McCartney. I’ve written several novels through the years (sounds so impressive, although I’ve never been published).  Be that as it may, at this tender age of middle- pre-old age, I’m having a moral testing, so to speak.

My first novel had no sex and no real violence. The sequel had a little more sex, and just a wee bit of violence. The third one had a bit of creatively written sex, and off-camera violence. I’m not prudish — it’s just that the stories didn’t need gratuitous S&V.

Now I am working on another story. Girl goes into “another world” that’s not what it seems (of course). I’m thinking of having one of the heroine’s new friends murdered.  Her murder is important to the direction of the story.  I also want her to be murdered right after she has a baby.

Now (again) — I am not a murderer. I am the person who picks up the worms in the driveway after the rain. I love puppies and unicorns. And the thought of popping someone off unnerves me. I don’t want/need to be graphic — I don’t need to describe it in detail, if at all. But I want my character to be well loved for the few chapters she’s around.

Why is it so hard for me to murder someone? And how do I get passed this?

Do I name her after an old boss who I can cheerfully say I hated? Should I give her such a weird name that no one can feel sorry for her?

Pretend characters are just that. Pretend. A character. Made up. Make believe.

Then why do I feel like I’m murdering a friend?

Any advice you can share will be most appreciated. In the meantime, I’ve got to start sharpening my knife/hatchet/sword.

Who knows when I will pretend to need it.

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17 thoughts on “How Do I Write “It”?

  1. OK…. so …. not wanting to offend (which is now going to sound ironic coz I’m a sook!)

    BUT saying things like “I love puppies and unicorns” is apologizing to your audience for writing “bad” things- and (in my opinion) as long as you are in “apology” mode you won’t be able to write that BEST SELLER.

    Take the bull by the horns and don’t apologize! Write what your characters NEED to do – its not you, its THEM…. that’s what writing is all about – seeing inside the minds of others.

    I have often grappled with the subject of my poetry, but at the end of the day I publish it – not worrying about what others think – I don’t know how much of my poetry you have read, but I have poems about sex, suicide, domestic violence, and numerous other “taboo” subjects – who cares!

    Just do it, coz if you don’t you’ll regret it 🙂

    Rant over x

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    1. Oh..rant needed! I have figured out that I am not the murderer, nor am I the heroine. I’m just the messenger. And if I get shot writing the message — oh well. I agree that this story needs this minor (heh) rip in the story for the main character to get her shit together. And please…feel free to let me know what you think any time. (I usually am much ballsier than this!)

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  2. If it helps, you’re not murdering your character. The bad guy is. You’re just the witness responsible for reporting the events. That said, if you, Claudia, are not emotionally invested and personally upset about the fate of your character, then you can’t expect your readers to care either. By all means, feel terrible about the unjust and cruel fate of a young mother ripped away from her child in the worst way possible–and make darn sure your readers feel terrible about it, too. Whatever you do, don’t soft soap it to make yourself feel better. Own it, and make your readers own it right along with you. Their desire to see justice done is what’s going to keep them turning the pages.

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    1. Sue, that is the best advice. I know whenever I write something disturbing, I want the reader to be disturbed too. Otherwise, what’s the point? I don’t want the reader to just gloss over the triggering point. Thanks so much. P.S. How many characters have you knocked off? Ha…

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      1. Ha! I’ve never done a body count, but it’s probably fewer than you’d guess. Thanks for sharing your writing challenge with us! This is a topic that I bet a lot of writers struggle with.

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    1. Well, my thought was…they bring these women to wherever so that they can reproduce. Once the “guest” has a baby they can live there modestly forever, but they can’t go home. If they try to escape, they are killed. Hence the tension for the newcomer.

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      1. I’ve seen films with more or less the same scenario,these places were always convents with horrible nuns who took the babies to sell them to rich people….(based on true stories !!!!!)

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      2. I know — and it’s a nasty habit! (haha..joke). But seriously, you wouldn’t think knocking off one pretend person would unnerve me! After all, it’s not like they get major billing…

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    1. I know! Its so much easier killing off a bad guy or gal. At least you’d feel like they got what they deserved. I ~could~ make the victim less friendly,..but that would take away some of the main character’s fear. I really appreciate your feedback,

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  3. I have a killer in the novel I’m querying now, but he kills victims that are not main characters. In fact, since those scenes are from the killer’s POV, not much is known about the victims. So while those scenes were still difficult to write, I wasn’t killing off my relevant characters. I can imagine that would be hard! Just the thought of killing off one of my favs gives me the willies. 🙂

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