Way behind now in this course but will hopefully get to the finish. 🙂
We were asked to sketch a character using an unfamiliar method:
- Imagine a character very like you but give them a dramatic external alteration. You might make the character the opposite sex, for example, or make them significantly older or younger. You choose.
- Imagine a character very like someone you have observed – but give them a dramatic external alteration. You might make the character the opposite sex, for example, or make them significantly older or younger. You choose.
- Create a character purely on the basis of your imagination or intellectual conception (as described by Novakovich as the ‘ideal method’). Remember, don’t be misled by the term ‘ideal’ – this character won’t necessarily be morally good or well behaved.
- Create a character using any of the above methods in combination, as in what Novakovich calls the ‘mixed method’.
I wrote a somewhat rushed piece using primarily the ideal method – I don’t think there is much of me or anyone I know here (maybe a little – is it possible to be totally unique?):
Jane looked and felt like a new woman, and why shouldn’t she? Her old life was gone, washed away by the tears of her old life and consigned to the dustbin of ‘no regrets’. She was reborn, bright and shiny, and by god she was going to have fun.
She looked at herself in the hall mirror, marvelling at the face that stared back at her. Gone were the features she had hated through her childhood, the pointy nose, the thin lips, the mono-brow resting above plastic glasses, the thin and mousy brown hair – god, she thought, how had she summoned the strength to even go out and why had she waited so long? Instead the face she found staring back at her was, she felt, classically beautiful with thick blond hair framing the soft features of her blemishless face, her freshly lasered eyes shining brightly, no longer obscured behind glasses.
In many ways, ironically, it was her husband that she had to thank for her new life, if only by virtue of the fact that he had killed off the old one when he had departed early one morning for parts anew with personages unknown. After the inevitable few months of despair, Jane was forced to take a long hard look at her life and accept the undeniable fact that she was a mess and resolve that she would sort out her life and move on.
She had started exercising and completely changed her diet and within three months she had lost 14kilo and had run her first 5k. As someone that had never been sporty at school she now found that she could not go a day without her 2 hour exercise session. Finding Dr Richards was a piece of good fortune and three operations later her nose, lips and breasts had been reduced, plumped and enhanced.
So here she was, almost a year to the day since that morning when she had woken up to find her old life gone. She may be 33 but Jane felt certain that the future that she was about to embark on was something to be embraced and enjoyed.
Critically I did feel the piece was a little rushed. I do try not to make descriptions feel forced and to let them flow and I did feel that I failed in a couple of places above – did not like the backstory in paragraph 4 – felt rushed and probably was.