Getting into a character’s head

On Saturday night, I decided that I was going to do something to get me motivated to dig my heels into my Nano novel, The Masks of Our Fathers.  As it stood on Saturday night, I was about 6,700 words in.  And the more I wrote, the less it seemed like a horror story.  There is a bit of background narrative that is necessary to get through in order to reach the real bloody meat of the story (looking to begin at roughly 14,000 words in) and I realize that this can often be distracting to a horror story.  So I tried to think of a way to fix this and came up with this:

Make the background and build-up as dark and gritty as possible.

But this is difficult to do with a narrative that doesn’t have any real horror to it.  However, the lead character is suicidal and comes from a severely broken home.  He has retreated to an isolated place from his childhood, located deep in the forests of Virginia, in order to kill himself.  So to get myself into that mindset, (I’m not, nor have I ever really been, suicidal), I made up a little soundtrack.  And I kid you not, I was getting chills and peeking over my shoulder as I was writing and listening it.

Now, here is one other area where WordPress sucks; they don’t allow you to embed playlists from any music sites.  My new favorite music site, Imeem, does provide you with the ability to throw a link into WordPress, though.

So to get a glimpse of what I was creeping myself out with on Saturday night, check out my playlist of Writing Music.  If you can, listen to it at night, while writing. (Besides, it is a bit of a stretch to call some of this “music” so it’s not something most people can just listen to).  It won’t have quite the same punch if you’re listening to it while birds are chirping through an open window.

Sidenote: If anyone knows how to cheat and get a playlist to show up on WordPress–the actual physical playlist–let me know, would ya?

updated sidnote: upon further review, I would really like to take this entire blog and transfer it over to Blogger.  Anyone web-savy enough to teach me how to do this?



  1. It took me forever to get to any blood. As long as your character is interesting, I wouldn’t worry. Plenty of well known horror writers take the long way home, so to speak.

  2. I’m not good enough to maintain suspense for an entire novel, that’s why I wussed out and took the mildly magcially-realism path.

    Soundtracks are awesome. Sorry I can’t help with the wordpress to blogger issue…I’m still figuring out the tricks and techniques to the latter.

  3. Oooh thanks for the playlist, that sounds like it’ll be right useful! (And as my useless two cents, I agree with Natalie– I’ll read anything as long as I’m interested in the character. It sounds like a pretty cool concept, so you’re halfway there without me even seeing it.)

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