Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Character Poetry

Sometimes I write poems in the point of view of my characters to get over writer's block. When I feel out of touch with a character, I close my eyes and try to BE that character. I review his or her goals, motivation, and conflict. I put myself in his or her situation. I regard his or her love interest and tap into the emotions.

Here's one I wrote after what we in the romance novel world call "The Black Moment." It's that part in the story where you're not sure the hero and heroine are going to get that happily ever after.

Slaying Silence

Silence hangs
between us
like summer night heat haze
across the faraway moon,
blurring her light,
her vision.
Blackness mutes
the celestial edges,
and I am small,
It would take
but a touch of your hand,
a brush of your lips
against my skin
to lift the fog
and silence the silence.
Your heartbeat would fill my ears,
caress my soul,
connect me,
save me.

After I penned this poem, the juices started flowing again and I wrote the ending to this character's story. This method may not work for everyone, but it's always been successful for me. It unlocks my mind and gets me back in tune with what I'm trying to convey to my readers. It brings the emotions to the surface.

The next time you are stuck, give character poetry a whirl. You just may find the words you're looking for. 


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Margo Hoornstra said...

Good advice. And great poem, Chris. I'm going to have to try that.

Jannine Gallant said...

I liked the poem a lot. You're very good at poetry, Chris! Me, not so much, but the thinking like your character advice is excellent.

Rolynn Anderson said...

Wow, Christine! Lovely free verse...my kind of poetry. So many of these phrases/words can be used in the text of your novel. Great heuristic technique!

Leah St. James said...

Love this! I was thinking it could be transferred to the novel as well.

Diane Burton said...

I usually skim over poems. They remind me too much of school where we had to dissect poetry. But, I loved yours. Very poignant. As the others have said, you could easily use the phrases in your story.