Inspiration…a Driving Force

The Twirl and Swirl of Letters

I was drawing in the Academmia the other day, when I overheard a girl say to her friend, “Oh Sarah! You want to study art, you should do it here!”

Of course, they were standing right behind me.

It’s so interesting, to imagine how I (or another art student) could inspire another to do something. Years from now, when that girl is old enough to go to college, will she remember seeing art students bent over their sketchpads, cursing Michelangelo for creating something so perfect?

Which brings me to my writing thoughts.

What inspires our characters to act? Is it a chance encounter, as mine with young Sarah may prove to be? Or are their actions planned for them by others?

Our characters don’t exist in vacuums (something I need to work on). They have motivations and things pique their interest, too. Their own little eccentricities, which may or may not ever see the light of day.

On the inspiration front, take my characters Griffin and Pryce. Both are doctors, both trained at the same university. But what brought them to this school?

For Griffin, it was carrying on the family trade. Both his father and grandfather were physicians, and both trained at the University of Edinburgh. As Griffin is both a native of the city, and continuing the tradition, it was a no-brainer.

Pryce, on the other hand, always enjoyed science and falls into the “I want to help people!” branch. He longs to escape his hometown, and ends  up in Edinburgh.

So, there we go. Two different means to reaching the same end.

2 thoughts on “Inspiration…a Driving Force

  1. A really good character is not going to know his/her motivations clearly any more than an actual person does. I suppose a character must be credible to the reader, but the influences of people are so vast, and some are so murky, that even an introspective person can never wholly know what moves them. In the case of my WIP, the protagonist is manipulated almost from the first page, but he thinks (foolishly) that he is in control of his life. As long as it’s done well, motivations can be all over the map.


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