“What’s up with the braids?” My eldest sister asks “You going for the boho look or the Heidi look”
Sadly I was going for neither. Although the boho look is very big here in Cali, and I love the book Heidi, I was actually dressing up as a character forging in my head. She is Hispanic with caramel skin, light green eyes, and jet black hair that she wears in thick braids which slide down her back like deadly snakes. However, with my Scandinavian coloring I look more like Heidi as oppose to a livin la vida loca.
However, this incident got me thinking how I often dress up as characters I create. I wish I could say that I base characters off me; brave, gorgeous, intelligent and valiant heroines. In truth I tend to come up with characters and then try to be them.
As an author I find this vital for writing in depth characters. An author is almost like a CIA profiler…well maybe not that extreme, but it sounds cool right? Still, you have to get into mind of your characters to know how they would act and think in certain situations.
When I say dressing up I don’t mean just doing your hair a certain way or wearing costumes…though that is super fun!! It can also mean doing things your character would do. For example, in writing my protagonist I cooked cowboy type dinners, learned how to sew ( a catastrophe by the way, my mother was near disowning me with how many sewing needles I broke), visited historic towns, not just for research, but also to feel like my protagonist would.
So, for novice writers, if you are having writers block or struggling with making a multidimensional character, then take a day and dress up; learn to play the piano, do archery, wear a corset if it helps (those do hurt like the dickens though). Whatever your character does, try a taste of it. Think of a child and how imaginative they are! Children are always dressing up, which in turns ignites their creative minds even more.