Wednesday, June 03, 2015

On Writing (Non) Emotional Characters

Writing:  My clockwork fairytale got critiqued last night.  It was gratifying that for once my descriptions were cool and (mostly) clear and the archaic language was beautiful instead of confusing.  There's some things that need tweaking, and I've been admonished "don't break it."

On the other hand, I had a beta reader try to go over the hard science fiction story I submitted last week and map the character emotion, only to have her come back and tell me that the character was so flat that she couldn't pick up the emotions at all.  "Hmm," I said, "Another flat-affect John Burridge character being emotionally numb."  Which would explain all those stories that worked when the POV character is flat because his family just died....

This of course leads to the introspection and question am too much of an ENTJ or something that prevents me from writing the emotional life of my characters?  Or maybe I'm writing from my own emotional experience?  Which of course leads to the question am I somehow emotionally broken or did I not learn how to emotionally process things (cue side-ways dog look and Scooby-Doo "Rhuh Raggy") or do I need to send my characters to a Stanislavian acting lab?

I suppose I can still write strong silent types.
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