Saturday, August 17, 2013

Go Teen Writers Virtual Writing Retreat - Saturday Dinner Giveaway!

Jill Williamson is a chocolate loving, daydreaming, creator of kingdoms. She writes weird books for teens in lots of weird genres like, fantasy (Blood of Kings trilogy), science fiction (Replication), and dystopian (The Safe Lands trilogy). Find Jill on FacebookTwitterPinterest, or on her author website.

I hope you're all still alive after all the word wars we've been having. I wanted to start a discussion about character growth.

Does your main character change by the end of your story? How does he (or she) grow? Does he learn something about himself, someone he knows, or the world he lives in?

Spencer sure has a lot of growing to do in The Mission League series. There will be seven books when I get it all done. I've got three books out so far, and those books are the giveaway for this post!

Enter to win the Spy Prize Pack!





A paperback copy of The New Recruit, Chokepoint, and Project Gemini by Jill Williamson. (Click on the titles to read more about each book on Amazon.com. Also, these paperbacks are available for U.S. residents only due to the expense of international shipping, but we will work out an alternative for international winners.)


69 comments:

  1. I haven't written the end of my WIP, but I believe the character is going to mature a lot after what she has been through. (She starts as happy go lucky, act before thinking, maybe ending a bit wiser)

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    1. Also, is there a way to get more entries if we aren't on FB or twitter?

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    2. Yes!! Because I don't have a Facebook or Twitter....

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  2. Ohhhh...working towards my dream? I was at a camp most of the week, but I managed to write some, plot, and work with my characters. :)

    And change? My characters do plenty of it. :)

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  3. I've picked my writing back up after a very long, unintentional break. I've also signed up for the 100 for 100 which will hopefully prevent similar breaks at least for the next couple of months!

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  4. I too haven't made itto the end of my W.I.P but i know my character learns to laugh, not be so timid.
    My other MC, finally can stop beating hmiself up like he's a failure, but he also learns how to loosen up :)

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  5. I've been brainstorming and planning some :)

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  6. written over 2,338 words in one sitting!


    Tw

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    1. Oh goodness, TW Wright! That's a lot! Great job :)

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    2. Wow TW. You are good. I can only write about a 1000ish words in one sitting.

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  7. As for character changing (forgot that part in my first comment :P), in the book I'm editing, my character falls in love, makes a big mistake, gets right with her parents and God, gets married, and has a baby. I'd say there's a lot of change in that book!

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  8. My MC learns to have more confidence in herself :)

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  9. It's not what I'm working on for the retreat, but in my main WIP that I'm now writing the second draft for... Elric, a crown prince changes a lot. At the beginning he is afraid to not do as he's told, even if it's wrong, but at the end, he comes to realize that sometimes he has to decide what's right and act on it. :)

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  10. Finished another chapter in my WIP! :)

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  11. This week, I have read a novel (to keep my brain in shape) and have edited a few chapters of my novel. Still working on fitting writing into my new work schedule.

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    1. Sorry, answered the raffle question. Here is the other: Othniel learns by the end of my book, that he must trust in his own decisions, and not look to his father for all the answers.

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  12. Yesterday, I did a little bit of character journaling for one of my charries and got some good insight into him. Poor guy. *Evil grin.*

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  13. My characters will go through a lot of change, my MC especially. She learns to let of her anger and just live. (And yes, I do know that is a common problem but the circumstances make it...interesting. :)) She's pretty reserved so she learns to open up as well.

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  14. My MMC, Grailyn, probably changes the most throughout my story. At the beginning, he advocates the use of magic and performs spells, but by the end of the book he's realized how dangerous magic can be when combined with human nature.

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  15. I worked on outlining and on character sketches.

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  16. Yes, my characters go through a lot of change. One character learns some very... scary things about himself. (It's an allagory. He becomes Judas.) At least he's not my POV character. That would be interesting. :)

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  17. I have started writing again after a break, and hopefully this time I will be able to make writing every day a habit!!

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  18. Yeah, my characters change. In one novel, my main character goes from being afraid (mostly of a pirate)to facing and defeating the pirate.

    The main character in my medieval fantasy novel I'm writing for the 100 for 100 challenge will go from feeling useless to his world to saving his kingdom.

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  19. I'm discovering that in this certain WIP, though the MC is the teenaged daughter, it kind of has a focus on not her growth, but her mother's. Her husband dies before the book begins, so it is kind of her journey to figuring out her identity as a single mom and working mom, and trying to raise her six kids well, and teach them about life, on her own.

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    1. Reminds me of "I Remember Mama." The MC in that is also a child but the story is about the mother.

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    2. WHOA. Throw back moment. That's a black and white film, right, Leah? I watched that movie with MY mama when I was a girl.

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    3. I read the book that was based off of, and looooved it! I think that kind of made me see the perspective.

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  20. You could ship to Canada?

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  21. I find the character development to be one of the harder parts of writing. It's hard because I don't want my character to be too annoying for the reader at the beginning, and yet, they need to grow. In one story, I think the way the two MCs grow is that they become more confident in what they're doing, and become leaders.

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  22. I started writing again after giving up on one of my stories. This time I WILL finish! it!

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  23. I finished up the first draft of my WIP this afternoon (working toward that dream!), so hopefully my character's done a good bit of changing. Throughout the story, she actually changed differently than I thought she would. She has to learn how to 1) Trust and 2) Realize that there is a purpose in the things she's been through.

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  24. Character development has been really hard for me. My goal is always to have the MC change in some major way, but in everything I've written, it really hasn't worked out like I hoped it would. One of the things I hope to work on in the WIP I've been outlining this weekend is to find a realistic way for my MC to develop.

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  25. One of my character discovers inner strength and another one learns to be more compassionate towards others.

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  26. One thing I've done is join the writing retreat! Yay! :)

    Final stats for today:

    Word count goal for the weekend: 10,000
    Word count goal for yesterday: 3,000 or more
    Word count for yesterday: 3,030
    Word count goal for today: 4,000 or more
    Word count for today: 4,014
    Words left to write this weekend (aka tomorrow!): 2,956

    Yahoooooooooooooooooooo! I am so happy I've gotten this far. I feel like my writing stores are completely depleted, but whatever. At least I finished Day Two :)

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    1. To answer the question posed above, yes, my MC does undergo a serious change as time progresses. He begins very arrogant and uncaring, but through various circumstances learns what it means to be humbled and to really love someone.

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    2. And I know I've said it at least twice before, but this Writing Retreat was a genius idea, and thank you so much for hosting it! I would say "Do it again soon, please!" but I'm going to have my hands full with schoolwork pretty soon, so I won't :)

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  27. hey! I have an advice/inspiration blog... you know 'your not alone' situations :) Mainly for teens :)
    This one is more private so i can really express myself without getting stick in school and stuff! I'd appreciate it if I got a follow?
    thank you xxx

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  28. I haven't actually finished my WIP, but I know that my MC is changing and will be changed by the end of her adventures.

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  29. Well I'm not too far into my WIP so this might change, but I think by the end of the story she will have learned

    1. That she has the power to make a difference in her own life.
    2. That even though the world is unfair it is occasionally nice to the people who deserve it.
    3. Even when times are tough, it is possible to enjoy the little things in life and be happy.

    Cheesy, I know, but I think it works within the context of my book :)

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  30. My poor characters change so much. My MMC has a very tragic backstory and has been completely traumatized by everything he's been through, so he needs to learn to overcome that. (And then of course I come and knock everything right out from under him. Bad author.) My FMC is struggling with an eating disorder and other, entirely different, traumas. (I knock everything out from under her, too, of course.) It sounds corny, but what they really both learn is how powerful love and forgiveness truly are. I'm at the point where I can see their arcs so clearly but it's incredibly difficult to put into words, both here and in the actual WiP. Sigh. :/

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  31. Yup! I find it a lot of fun to make my characters change. Often, that's the first thing I come up with in a story. I have a character who's like this, and by the end of the story I want he (or she) to be like this. Often, there are many surprise changes that come along the way, but that's usually how I start them.

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  32. Hmmm. At first, my MMC is rather jaded and he knows what he's doing is wrong, in the back of his head, but he's too scared to change. Through the novel, he takes ownership and realizes more that he should do the right thing, no matter what the consequences (although of course, in a dystopian government, that's rather hard to do).

    In my future (currently outlining) WIP, my MC goes from feeling like she shouldn't be trusted and loved (because she blames herself for her brother's death) to realizing that she should live without being haunted by her past and that she should (try to) put her trust in God.

    Thanks for the giveaway1 And I loved the question, Jill.

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  33. Yes, she does. I need to work on making the character arc more recognizable, but my main character goes from being very cautious to stepping out on faith to do some crazy things. Creating meaningful character arcs has been one of my challenges in my writing journey.

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  34. My MC has huge dreams which I totally crush and he becomes very bitter and selfish and it is through his adventures that he learns that God is a loving God, even though he allows tough things to happen.

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  35. I have so many dreams! One is to have a Godly marriage in the future, and today I started reading 'I Kissed Dating Goodbye'. I really, really agree with what Josh Harris says, and the kind of relationship he talks about is the kind of relationship I want to have with whoever the right man is. It's a very challenging book, but it's well worth reading. :)

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  36. My dream is to get a book published... I contacted an author today.

    Layla.

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  37. Editing... it's difficult editing a co-written book. In fact, I almost lost a whole chapter of careful edits. -_- Recovering it made the night all that much better. :)

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  38. I'm finding that for me, chasing my dreams are little day by day steps. Each word I write, each paragraph, each chapter, brings me that much closer to reaching my dream of becoming published.

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  39. This week I have continued to meet my year goal of writing at least 500 words each day. This will help me in the long run to just get the writing out and edit later. Also, perhaps next year I can further my goal by making it 1000, and then every year or half year after that bump it up. Every word counts toward my dream.

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  40. I'm finally learning how to make my characters grow. I was t very good at it before

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  41. At the start, my main character's been all on her own for a long time, drifting from place to place. And she's good at being alone, always moving--it's kept her safe. So when she finds herself thrust into a team setting, it freaks her out; it's harder to stay on the move and undetected with a group of people instead of just one kid, and she sees the others as more of a liability. By the end, though, she ends up accepting the team setting more--and instead of every girl for herself, she ends up risking herself to try and save one of the others.

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  42. I hope they do. :) Usually my shy characters get a major confident boost from their confident best friend.

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  43. Ooh, so important! I don't think I've had a MC who doesn't change. With the exception of books in a series, I expect a major character arc whenever I read a book.
    An interesting dynamic I'm using this time is having one of my MCs change for the worse. We'll see how that goes!
    Thanks so much for hosting this retreat! It's so fun and stimulating! :)

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  44. This week I went through some of my old writing ideas and reworked a few of them! Now one of them is my new WIP! :D

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  45. Yah my main character changes ALOT. She sees the world differently, knowing the government's secrets and all. She also learns a lot about trust and betrayal

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  46. My main character learns a lot about letting go, trusting people, and being less gullible, lol.

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  47. Pansy, by the end of the novel, will hopefully have learned to trust God better, to have more courage, and to be the one who makes the change happen, rather than waiting for someone else to change things and rescue her. She'll also have fallen at least partially in love.

    Hayden will be more humble, be closer to God, and will also be more forgiving of others' faults.

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  48. My main character ALWAYS grows. That's what the book is for! :D Can you imagine writing a story and the MC didn't change, even a little bit?
    I want to stretch my characters, make a way for people to love them as much as I do, and then let them watch my babies (*sniff* I'm so proud! ;D) change for the good. And maybe the reader will change with them!
    My MC's always start in a dark place. And then, as He does, the Lord finds them and brings them out of it.

    ~Koren :)

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  49. I have two MCs, a guy and a girl! The guy learns that even though he can't be a superhero or as popular as his "perfect" older brother, he can be cool in his own way and get friends by being himself. And the girl learns that she is in control of her own life, and must let go of others' opinions and express herself fearlessly.

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  50. I have resolved to write a bad first draft. I am a HUGE perfectionist, and I never get anything done because of that. I'm aiming to get the draft finished by my birthday in December! :D

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    1. I know I tend to be a perfectionist. I was going to write a page, then make it perfect. Write a page, make it perfect. But then I realized that wouldn't really work, so my first draft is just me writing, and when it is finished I will have a lot of editing to you. Hopefully you get it done in December!

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  51. I've been working on my dream by finishing my first draft of the second book I've written.

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  52. I love character growth in novels and so I try to really work on that within the books I write.

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  53. I worked on plotting out my next novel.

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  54. I've been working a lot this week, but I've been able to write a little each night in my WIP.

    Morgan

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