Sep 21, 2010

GothNoWriMo Pre-Planning Progress 5

Today I looked at limits.

Holly Lisle has covered this topic in her How to Think Sideways course. Randy Ingermanson also covered it in Volume 6, #3 of his Advanced Fiction Writing Ezine on 2nd March 2010. (It's in the second section entitled Creating: Some Things are Impossible where he examines Stephanie Meyer's Twilight series and why it works.)

Despite having a number of things to do today, I sat myself down in a coffee shop with paper and pen and worked on the ghost's limits.

For example, I created a scene yesterday whereby my ghost can manipulate physical objects in the house - she uses Deirdre's mobile phone to call Brian. Today I fleshed out this idea with how she was able to do this (the whole physics behind energy-use), and the limit beyond which she could not operate. i.e. she can't make noise (not having a body) unless she uses one physical object to strike another one. This means she can't knock on a wall with her knuckles, for example.

I've lots more examples of limits, but just in case any prospective beta readers are reading these posts, I'm not going to go into any details because that would spoil reading the novella when it's finished!

This was a great exercise to do because I found answers to questions I hadn't yet asked; I was able to link up character motivation with plot and I could see how some of the limits would very likely lead to new, fun scenes to write.

Limits. They're very important because they allow us to become more creative.

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As an aside, below are a couple of interesting articles here on the relationship between limits and creativity:

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/productivity/limits-and-creativity.html
http://abundance-blog.marelisa-online.com/2010/01/27/limits-can-free-creativity/

2 comments:

Knuxchan said...

What an excellent idea! I should do that with my story, too. It's definitely an important element for characters to have limits.

Liselm said...

hi Knuxchan and thanks for dropping by.

Glad you liked the idea of limits, and best of luck with your GothNo project! :)