About a month ago Ozlem Yikici came up with a theory about writing and posted a challenge on her page. I agreed to take part in this challenge to see if it confirmed her theory. Here was the first challenge:
Setting: A small quiet village approx 200 miles from the nearest city adorned with thatched cottages and surrounded by vast empty fields. Not much happens here, except for their festival –the festival of colour, this happens once a year; tourists and families from afar visit, no one misses this event. This is the highlight of the year for the villagers; they prepare for this the whole year. now I want you to devise a short dialogue of about 200-300 words -this can be in any genre you feel comfortable with. Ok so far? Excellent, now listen carefully, do not post this little exercise until I say so -or else the fun will be lost. The key point of this game is your character(s), I want you to build them as you would any other character, get to know them inside and out, their likes, their hates etc -jot it all down and keep this for the second round of this game (that’ll be in two weeks time). Great, now that you know your character(s); write them in into that 200-300 piece of writing, make sure the following points are included and acted out within the dialogue (this is still in line with my theory):
- No children live in the village.
- A child hides in a barn and stays after the festivities.
- Your character(s) interacts with the child.
- The child has a secret.
- Add a surprise of your own -in keeping with your character(s) profile
Try to keep away from stereotypes -if you cannot then add a quirky character trait; this will help the game be more fun and hopefully challenge you all.
These are the characters I developed based on the above guidelines.
Date of birth: June 19th
Place of birth: London
Religion: non believer
Relationship status: single
Eye color: sea blue
Clothing style: casual outdoors
Nobody knows much about him
Date of birth: November 6
Place of birth: small remote village 200 miles outside Dublin
Relationship status: single
Occupation: planner and top organiser for festival of colour events
Height: 5’ 5”
Eye color: green
Clothing style: casual
From these characters I developed the following dialogue:
Hank always found himself a bit mesmerised by Lucy. He finally collected his thoughts and asked, “What type of help?”
“I can’t really tell you here, I’d rather just show you. Come on.” Lucy grabbed Hank by the arm and dragged him towards the barn.
“What is your hurry?” Hank asked but then he focused on the small dark haired boy with wide brown eyes staring up at him from where he sat huddled on a pile of hay. “Whoa, where did he come from?”
“He says he belongs to the performers. They were using this barn as their dressing room but they have all left already. He doesn’t look very old does he?” Lucy whispered.
“I don’t think he is but the last time I saw one up close was a long time ago.”
“I am the youngest person in this village Hank, I have never seen one up close, until now. You have to do something with him and quick before someone else sees him.”
“What do you want me to do about him?”
“I don’t know, I just sort of figured since you live so far out and keep to yourself so much, he might be safe if he stays with you until we figure out what to do with him.”
“This is crazy. What if I get caught with him?”
“You won’t get caught. Nobody ever goes out as far as your place. Look at him Hank, he is terrified. Hey kid do you want to stay at Hank’s until we find your people?”
The kid looked up at Hank a small smile spread across his face. Hank knew this was a bad idea but he couldn’t stand the thought of what would happen if the child was found and besides Lucy might come and visit.
Tomorrow I will post the second part of A Fun Game in Your Head.
Billie Jo I love your characters and the dialogue sets the scene and characters into play nicely 🙂 I am now extremely curious how Cynthia E. will work your characters into the dialogue and if the same voice shines through. This is exciting! Thank you for taking part.
I’ll keep an eye out for part two 😀
Thanks Ozlem, it has been fun. I am curious to see how it all worked out too.
What a fun project! Thanks for sharing your part in it. I can’t wait to follow this through to the end.
Thank you, it has been fun. I can’t wait to see what the other writer has done with my characters.
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I like yours. I like that it’s going somewhere; how they already have a plan, and how I can already see how adorable the friendship between the awkward, solitary guy and the little boy is going to be, and how you work in the romantic subplot.
Suberb job on writing the character sketches, too, by the way.