So anyway, my beloved bromide, the Most Honorable and Upright Aaron and I came up with a writing exercise for us both sometime ago, looking for something hip and relevant--theme-writing.
Why, Rachel, what's theme-writing? What brilliant idea did you and your genius brother come up with? I can hear you ask. Well, I'll tell you.
Theme-writing is our way of focusing one aspect of a character by giving them a word or a phrase: "Light" or "Defiance." The themes can be as concrete or as abstract as you like. They can be as long or as short as you want them to be; the only restraint is that they can't be more than a page. Two to four paragraphs is kind of the limit; if you want a real challenge, you would keep them to only one to two sentences. They can be told first, second or third person. I personally prefer the omniscient third person narration, because it gives the supporting cast a chance to talk for a bit on a certain subject. I started to better understand and expand upon the first draft of Katriona's character due to some of the earlier themes that I wrote for the Seventh-Born Chronicles.
Sometimes we'll do twenty themes, sometimes fifty. The ultimate goal is a hundred themes, one after the other. I've given Aaron a Hundred Themes for his own epic fantasy sequence, Stranger at the Door and other works-in-progress of his. He's given me a hundred for the fantasy series I'm doing, the one this blog is named after. I've been after him to give me some for Halcyon House, but I haven't gotten them yet. I'll start pestering him once I get a chance.
The first series of Themes I wrote was for the fantasy sequence: some were short, some were long, some were funny, some were me indulging my inner-romance and fluff loving girl. Some were downright angsty. Most of them were me giving myself the chance to let some romantic and tender moments take place among the cast, things that aren't (or can't) happen onscreen due to the current plot line. Once I start doing some for Halcyon House, I look forward to peeking into Katriona's, Sydney's, Silas's, even Neil and Violet's head. It promises to be revealing, at the very least.
Over & Out,