Friday, December 3, 2010

Revisions Week - Collages Reveal

Characters. My favorite part of the story.

I love creating them, I love watching them come to life.

My main character comes first, they speak to me, tell me what they like, what they dislike.

We talk. I listen. We argue. I win. They stop talking. A vicious cycle that eventually works itself out.

Then I write. Let it sit. Outline. Begin Collages (sometimes before I write a story, but rarely)

Here is what before looks like.


I grab my trust accesories box. Pens, paperclips, post-it's, glue sticks, rulers, everything I'd need for the perfect collage.










Here is a side view of both boxes. My trust accessories box and my magazine and paper box. Beautiful is it not?






Just a peek inside. Glamour always has amazig stuff. But I have tons of magazines, anything I can get my hands on I tuck away, I even have a western magazine (no.I.did.not.pay.for.it.) it has been useful!






You can see my jeans (right hand corner) this is me at work, carefully planning everything, making sure I have the perfect colors, pictures, and all to make the best character collage for my peeps!





I love everyone I make. Every piece is thought out. Colors, designs, names, models, all represent something in my story. It may not mean anything to you, even after reading the story, but it's there, hidden beneath the written words.

My Traveler's Collages - I will warn you, I'll share just a little about each character, however not a whole lot. I am in revisions so there is still a lot of unknowns and a lot of secrets I'd like to keep.

Lauren

My main character. Lauren. 16 years old.











Mel, Lauren's best friend in the real world.










Tully, the first person Lauren meets for the Travelers.









Blake, an arrogant guy in the Traveler's house that thinks he is Lauren's perfect match.










Brianna, Lauren's roommate at the Traveler's house.









Cameron, her friend in the real world. The only one to see her for who she really is.







All of these characters are in order of how they were introduced in the book I wrote. I hope you enjoyed.

What's your favorite part of the writing process? Do you make character collages?

51 comments:

Diana Mieczan said...

Its fantastic that you are making character collages...I really enjoyed looking at them and getting their personality shine through.
Have a fantastic Friday, darling

Guinevere said...

It's neat to see how you do this! I don't make character collages. In fact, I'm very much a just-the-words kind of writer; I've been thinking I'd like to try making collages for my stories to help tap the visual side of my imagination more. Maybe that'll be a bit of a weekend project for me as I begin the new novel. Your collages are beautiful and fun and seem like they'd really help you get in touch with your characters on another level... Thanks for the inspiration!

Samantha Vérant said...

I have never made a character collage, but that doesn't mean I never will. Your Cameron looks adorable.

Renae said...

Love your collages! Gorgeous! One of these days I'm going to try this. It looks fun and inspiring. Thanks for sharing Jen!

salarsenッ said...

I totally do that! It's so fun. It's like first dates, getting to know someone, figuring out what makes them tick or can set them off. I use corkboards, cut-outs, and my trusty index cards. lol

Christine Danek said...

I don't get a whole lot of time to make collages. It's so cool though. They look awesome and how fun.
I find some pictures, but write out the characteristics. Journal is always by my side. Plus, with the kiddos, I can just jot it down quickly vs. them wanting to play with the glue stick.
Maybe one day I'll get to it.
Have a great weekend!

Laura Pauling said...

My favorite part is the writing of the first draft. I love writing from scratch. And coming in close second is when then the major revisions are done and it's just polishing up! Great collages!

Jessica Hill said...

Oh my gosh, this is so cool. I never would have thought of doing something like this. Hmmm, now you've got me thinking about trying this sometime!

Joanna St. James said...

making a collage sounds like fun and a good idea.

Beth said...

I usually find someone my character looks like before starting, but I never thought of making a collage. That might be a good idea and fun ;)

beth-project52.blogspot.com

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I made collages for the first time this summer for my current wip. I love it! I feel like the characters are in the same room with me when I write. The only problem I had was coming up with the pictures I needed for the guys. Even the one mother, who has a major role in the story, was tough. Teen magazines have way more pictures than their adult counterparts.

Teenage Bride said...

Jen!! I love these. I really really love these, like I am going crazy over them haha.

Great idea!

Amy said...

I dont make character collages... I hadn't even thought of them before now.

Yours are great. What a wonderful insite into your characters :D

Melissa Gill said...

I've never made a collage before, but I plan to do this for my current MS. I'm a big scrap booker, so hope some of those skills will translate into collaging.

Your collages are absolutely beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

Jenn said...

Thanks for posting! I've made collages for my stories, but not for individual characters. I like that idea--maybe I'll give it a shot this weekend! :)

Angela Felsted said...

This is really clever and creative, the way you make collages for your characters.

Carolyn V. said...

I haven't made a character collage. What a fantastic idea!!! They are so cool. =)

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Thanks for showing us your character collages. They are super!

Candyland said...

That's awesome. I wish I could find time to do that.

Quinn said...

Love your collages! I've never made one myself, but creating characters is my favorite part as well. Sometimes I'll look online through thousands of pics of models until I find one that strikes a cord. Other times (most of the time), I pull out my own supplies and sketch each and every character. I'll go through several sketches for each character until I finally settle on a look that feels right. Then I'll draw them in different poses, different scenes that I've envisioned and some of the different outfits they wear throughout the book.

Creepy Query Girl said...

wow, that sounds like a really cool fun way to keep your characters in view and relax after the writing frenzy! Thanks for sharing! They look awesome!

Matthew Rush said...

I don't, but I should start so that I can look at pictures of beautiful women like Drew Barrymore ... more.

Chris Phillips said...

How many times have I asked you to quit using my photo for your hunky male character collages? Sheesh! I sketch pictures myself for my characters.

Jessica Bell said...

These are great! Unfortnately I can't churn out a first draft as fast as you! (whispers about immortal qualities) so I spend all my spare time writing as much as I can. Thanks for sharing! They're great! :o)

E. Elle said...

I've never made character collages but yours are so cool! I may have to steal your idea. (Don't worry - I'll give you credit.)

Colene Murphy said...

What a crazy awesome way to get your characters down! That is sooo neat!!! Leave it to you to do that...;) I love it!

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I love it! That is way cool, Jen. I may give it a try. :-)

Catherine Denton said...

How did I never think of this? Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant!!!

Jennie Bailey said...

I just do one picture of the character and then I write all about them under it. So it's not really a collage, but I do need that image of what they look like locked into my head. Your collages look great! What an excellent way to get yourself into your characters and into your story!!

Sondrae Bennett said...

I always find it interesting how people get in their character's heads. I remember reading an authors blog and they said they had a worksheet for each character with things like favorite color, favorite food. And only when the worksheet was complete did they start the novel. I don't do anything that complicated but I love the collage idea. You can see the characters personalities jumping off the page!

The Golden Eagle said...

I love the idea of a character collage! It's so cool that you make them--they look awesome.

Terry Stonecrop said...

I've never done that but yours are so cool! Eye catching.

The dialog is my favorite part of all but I also like picking out my characters' cars. Shopping for cars is fun:)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Never made a collage. I'd probably end up making a mess instead.
The Fantastic Friday Writers covered characters today though. My take is up today.

Donea Lee said...

Jen - you never cease to amaze! I would love to spend a day inside your head, seriously. :)

Great collages - what a wonderful visual for characters! I might attempt it if I didn't think people would mistake it for a kindergarten art project gone awry...

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

I love your character collages. I so need to get back into doing this.

Indigo said...

Characters are definitely my favorite. I don't, but really want/need to make character collages. I think it'll bring the character alive for me, a three dimensional view in my mind. (Hugs)Indigo

Amy Holder said...

LOVE the collages! what a creative idea. I'll have to give that a try.

Nicole Zoltack said...

Favorite part? I love to create characters too. But I also love to do research. I love to learn about lesser known mythological creatures and incorporate them into my stories. Like the kelpie. I have trolls in my fantasy romance series but they aren't you're normal trolls, and I have a reason why you don't see many female dwarves. I'm a fantasy nerd, lol

fakesteph said...

This looks so fun. I totally have to try this.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

that is very cool. I would try it but I have no magazine subscriptions and there fore no pictures to snip and paste.

Meredith said...

Ooooh, I think I'm going to like Cameron! :) These collages are so amazing--what a fun resource to have while you're writing!

Jai Joshi said...

It's fascinating seeing how another writer goes through the process. The best part for me is writing from a thorough outline, knowing where my story is going and seeing it come to life as I write it. Love that part. The rush of the first draft is like a drug.

Jai

Abby Minard said...

So cool, Jen! Love the collage idea. I don't think I'd have the patience. But I do need to sit down and draw my characters. I love how we all have different ways of planning and speaking to our characters.

Evelyn J. Quinn said...

Hello! Thought I'd stop by to introduce myself. I'm J...your newest follower. :)


I adore this post! It's so interesting to see how you work and how close you get to your characters before hand. I love the collages you create, I wish I had thought of it, but sadly, I have the mind of a pantser. Yes, it's true, although I know my characters well enough already, my favorite part of the writing process is not knowing what happens next. It's such a rush.

On the downside, though, it causes quite a few stalls and bouts of severe writer's block.

Can't wait for more posts.

-J,

The Words Crafter said...

Since way back in earliest middle school, I've had actors in my head for the characters I was reading.

When I began making up stories, I did the same thing.

A character from a movie is what actually inspired my nano story. I've collected magazines to create their home....cool collages!

Lynda Young said...

I've never even thought of doing a character collage. What a great idea!

Melissa said...

Oh JEN! I love these. Cameron's is positively dreamy. I'm rooting for him already. "still alive" over the water - that is freaking evocative and poetic. LOVE IT.

And MEL, she even has brown hair! I LOVE IT.

Kimberly Franklin said...

And such pretty characters they are. I've never tried to make character collages, but they certainly are pretty!

Amie Kaufman said...

These are awesome, I love it! I print out pictures, though I've never made a collage. They really convey a mood!

Vicki Rocho said...

Love your collages. I keep saying I need to try that, but haven't yet.

Elena Solodow said...

These are amazing!! What a good idea!