Writers, if they have any fucking sense, should be their characters before they ever even put them on paper. Developing a character is not just making up a name and a physical description. You have to live that character, you have to feel them under your skin, watching you write. Watching you fail and succeed.
One of the most dangerous books I ever wrote was Backwards Epiphany, which is in the final stages of proofreading and will be placed to Kindle very soon. This book is about a man who takes vengeance. Yes, stereotypical as fuck, but I needed to change that. Many vigilantes will always try to not compare themselves to the people they’re killing, or try to be “better” than his or her targets. That’s not the case with David, the protagonist of B.E.. He knows that he must become scum, become a criminal, to destroy them. He loses himself in the self-induced madness, and my novel follows his descent and evolution.
It’s dangerous because I placed myself where David was. I imagined myself as him, and started to adopt his attitudes in real life. Think it’s horseshit? Well, fuck you then. You don’t know shit.
He begun to…not take over, but I felt myself already predicting what he was going to do next, before I wrote it. Before I imagined it. I felt my way through the darkness that was this novel, and was, or is, I should say, his character. He started to do things, terrible things, and I didn’t feel remorse for it. I started to understand him, and eventually, I found things within myself that brought David to life.
I do not hide these things. Why? because. We must embrace all aspects of our personality. Writers just have the opportunity to turn it into something that others can feel and see. David, as well as all my other characters, all are shards of myself. The more time I spend with these fictional people, the more I feel them inside my head. Once again, think this is horseshit? Once again, fuck you. You don’t know shit. Writing a novel is akin to ripping your fuckin’ chest open and letting people examine your organs while you breathe and bleed. But, it’s not against your will. Or at least for me it isn’t.
I have no problem baring all to readers. It’s what makes me a writer. But don’t you dare think for one fucking second that I don’t live my characters. When I kill a character, hurt them, make them do something, it’s moot. I don’t make them do a fucking thing. I don’t have control at that point, they are simply doing what I (or a piece of myself) would be doing.
In a way, everything I write is simply an autobiography from different parts of myself, and it’s a constant fight to keep the me I show to the world the on top.