This month, The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is asking participants to posts photos of ourselves or our alter egos with any of the IWSG swag, or the logo. I edited two of my alter ego dolls into the T-shirt logo, one representing my good side and the other my dark side.
This month’s question is:
Have you ever slipped any of your personal information into your characters, either by accident or on purpose?
As I’ve discussed before, Emeline Rosalie Troy of my contemporary historical family saga is strongly based on myself, though with some differences. For example, I only wish I’d gone to Vassar, I’ve never smoked pot, and I didn’t go right from undergrad to graduate school.
Emeline’s dysfunctional, one and only relationship is also strongly based on mine with my ex-“fiancé,” though I changed his name from Aleksey Smirnov to András Kóbor. I felt giving her a Russian boyfriend would resemble real life too closely, and I didn’t want to waste my favorite Russian male name on such a loser.
Writing the chapter “Halloween Wedding Gone Awry” in Justine Grown Up actually helped me to realize I needed to end my dead-end, dysfunctional relationship with Sergey. If my fictional dopplegänger could look at all this overwhelming evidence and realize it was long past time to walk away, for her own mental health and happiness, then I needed to do the same.
Many other aspects of my life and personality have seeped into my characters and writing over the years. I have a planned future post about how much of your real life to incorporate into your writing, and how to strike a balance between real-life inspiration and too much reality.
For only the second time ever, I had to blacklist a troll from commenting. I got a notification of a comment on a post about how not to write third-person omniscient, and it sounded so much like a prior comment on a similar post. My instinct was right.
I honestly don’t get why people who disagree so strongly with a blog post take the time to write rude comments like that. If you can’t agree to disagree in a civil fashion, or offer respectful constructive criticism, your time would be better-served reading posts you do agree with.
He’s left a lot of similar rude comments on many other writers’ blogs, all iterations of, “The one and only true way for me is massive infodumps, purple prose, telling instead of showing, and remorseless adverbs, and none of your fascist diatribes and dictates will ever force me to change.”
These are just some examples:
My classic horror film series continues on Friday with the lost 1922 Lon Chaney, Sr., film A Blind Bargain. Next week will feature two more Lon films, The Unknown and the lost London After Midnight (both 1927), and Hilde Warren und der Tod (1917).
How much do you sprinkle yourself into your stories? Have you ever dealt with trolls or people leaving rude comments? What would you say to a writer who insists on only doing things his or her way and rejects suggestions for improving his or her writing?