Friday, February 20, 2015

Monday, February 23, 2015

Announcements and Reminders:
Next time we will go to lab 223.  By the end of that class you need a solid first draft written and published on Kidblog for your short story assignment.

1. Today's Scribble:  List ten or more of your favorite characters from books and stories.  For each, explain why you picked him or her as a favorite.  Is he or she the type of person you'd like to hang out with?  Do you have things in common with the character?  Are there things about the character you admire? Why a favorite?

2. Guess Who! Characters

3. Interesting Characters/Photos

4. Share

Scribble Next Time: Brianne S.

5. Developing Characters

In Stephen King’s words, from ON WRITING:
“Thin description leaves the reader feeling bewildered and nearsighted. Over description buries him or her in details and images. The trick is to find a happy medium. It’s also important to know what to describe and what can be left alone while you get on with your main job, which is telling a story.
I’m not particularly keen on writing which exhaustively describes the physical characteristics of the people in the story and what they’re wearing (I find wardrobe inventory particularly irritating; if I want to read descriptions of clothes, I can always get a J. Crew catalogue). I can’t remember many cases where I felt I had to describe what the people in a story of mine looked like—I’d rather let the reader supply the faces, the builds, and the clothing as well. If I tell you that Carrie White is a high school outcast with a bad complexion and a fashion-victim wardrobe, I think you can do the rest, can’t you? I don’t need to give you a pimple-by-pimple, skirt-by-skirt rundown. We all remember one or more high school losers, after all; if I describe mine, it freezes out yours, and I lose a little of the bond of understanding I want to forge between us. Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.”

Do you recognize this description?
“Oh! but he was a tight-fisted hand at the grindstone, __________! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster. The cold within him froze his old features, nipped his pointed nose, shriveled his cheek, stiffened his gait; made his eyes red, his thin lips blue; and spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice. A frosty rime was on his head, and on his eyebrows, and his wiry chin. He carried his own low temperature always about with him; he iced his office in the dog-days and didn't thaw it one degree at  . . . . "
More examples:  handout

Writing Magic, chapter 39 -- Characters

Notes on Archetypal Characters based on a presentation by Annette Lyon: 
The Writer’s Journey is a book that explains common types of characters and plots.
Hero – audience identification -- someone we can relate to on some level
if Malfoy were our main character, would we sympathize with him
growth, change –
action --
character flaw – biggest weakness (could be fear,
sacrifice -- (example, Harry willing to die for the greater good)
Mentor – often a wise old man or woman
(Dumbledore and Hagrid)
gift-giving (light-sabre) --
motivating hero – quelling fear, kick in the pants, etc
can turn out to be a villain shape-shifter
Threshold Guardian
testing the Hero
(Dursley letters, purpose – to test the hero

issues the challenge
announce a coming change, that all is not well
provides motivation to Hero
person or object

Shape-shifter --
not what he or she appears to be (Shape)
“Real” self-revealed can force change
good or evil, can be any character

the villain
tests the hero’s true abilities
forces Hero to rise to the challenge
often appear beautiful, elegant, or good (Shapeshifter)

balances out the drama with a little laughter
brings things into perspective

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