“If writing can be thought of as a sort of telepathy–a rousing and rendering of spirits–then Elwork is as talented a clairvoyant as any your likely to encounter.” I quote Scott Smith, on Paul Elwork’s The Girl Who Would Speak for the Dead.
Where stories come from is something writers occasionally like to explore.
Different stories have different answers. If a story comes from seemingly out of nowhere, sometimes I’ll pretend for a moment that it’s being told to me, sent to me somehow.
Do I believe this? No, not all, and even as I think it fleetingly I don’t take it seriously.
In Shade, by author Neil Jordan, his main character Nina becomes a famous actress on film and stage. In one of her first trials at acting on stage, when the curtains lift and she’s surrounded by applause she experiences a departure that I liken to an author writing:
And the character was gone, quite suddenly, lifted from me by invisible hands with no sense of release; it was hovering somewhere in the wings, maybe, like a ghost itself, awaiting another manifestation, another embodiment, another performance.
When we write, I think most of us, do indeed become our character, go someplace else, experience something else. It is easier to become some characters than others. At times it happens spontaneously, at others we must work at it, trying to find the character, searching. And sometimes that character lingers, not letting go, hanging on…