Whether you are an illustrator, writer, sculpture, photographer, or any other kind of creator, we all have a process for how we create our brand of art.
I've had this idea for a while now. And since I create two kinds of art (drawing and writing), I can provide two separate articles for this project theme.
Now, I focus most of my work in the fan fiction section of literature, so I'll be focusing on telling my process using the fandom Undertale since I am very heavily into that fandom now. I don't plan to make this article uptight and strict. I plan to explain it in a way that would replicate how I talk to people. So sit back, relax, and read if you want.
Let's get started!
I am a very spontaneous person. Part of ADHD and whatnot, I'm sure. But it tends to come out favorably enough, regardless. I learned years ago that if I wrote down too many notes, I wouldn't want to write the story. I would get bored of it and just say 'nope, I'm over it'. I found the same issue if I played it out in my mind like a movie. I just lost interest. And that sucks!
So I decided, doing vague ideas (Character A does this and B reacts like that...) and leaving the rest to 'in the moment' worked best. In a way, it does work because it might come off as more realistic or even more dramatic. But on the other hand, it might sound plain crazy - imagine if I let myself write when I'm sick or just feeling loopy. NOPE!
Thankfully, I've become more in touch with the reality of the world in the last few years, so what seemed more likely to happen in the past has definitely changed from my perspective.
Characters are often hard to pinpoint. I read A LOT of fan fiction, so I see a lot of different sides to one character. In Undertale, the character I like to focus on most is the most popular (that I have seen): Sans the Skeleton. Thankfully, the community has helped me learn this character better than the game has. I have never stayed in a fandom because the community made it amazing. JUST Daaaaaaaang, you guys!
Keeping this skele-dude in character...
I have read stories with a Sans that is goofy, lazy, and charming. Another Sans that was so anxious and timid that many times it was very comedic in a way that was relate-able. And even a Sans who was a total a--hole just because he had been through too much and became un-trusting of new people, but still hit all the qualities in the game.
I also learned what puns really were thanks to this fandom...eheh, awwwwkward!
Each author has their own pet peeves and writing styles. I am no different. I often make the mistake of writing in a way that would have been more common in the 1800's, mainly because I respect their intricate and proper way of speaking. It's like a puzzle where you need to figure out what is being said. I go so overboard that it gets awkward. But hey, I'm still learning. Isn't that half the point of writing? Your basically showing the world what you have learned. That's how I see it.
I am a grammar freak. I cannot express that enough. I read a lot and since I know that the writers probably don't have editors who spot everything, I shrug it off. I make mistakes just as much as the next person, so who am I to judge. It's the people who write in a style that just "this happened. then this. then this." I just...gaaaaaaaaah! No! Please, emote in some way! I can't deal with the numb way you write! Stahp!
I have a very specific genre, though. Undertale immediately fills out one of them, but the other makes it necessary for me to dig deeper, and I am very particular. I guess you can say the genre is two-faceted. I love fantasy/romance, Undertale already guaranteeing the fantasy since it's a story of monsters and magic. Whoop whoop!
One thing I love about this fandom is that there is so much breathing room, hence the a million and one Alternate Universes created by the fans. Since so much is left up to interpretation, one person can have a headcanon of Sans/Toriel "Soriel" while others will be more into Sans/Frisk "Sanisk/Frans" and then there are people like me who like Sans/Reader or Sans/OC fan fictions.
I have tried to do a Sans/Reader fic, but I continuously make the mistake of changing the "you" to and "I" because I am so used to telling a story from a first person OC standpoint. I do still plan to write a Reader fic, but that will come later, after I finish OAiLI.
I do like a few of the AUs, but I do have some standards. I like Underfell, but I like 'Edge' to be less 'grossly perverted'. A good example is in the story All Messed Up. The author takes the Underfell characters and has them adapt to the surface in a way that is just fantastic and honestly, should be expected. This is another form of relating, but instead of us relating, it's the characters relating to us. Daaaaaaaaang, again! Some kinda broke the fourth wall, maybe? I don't know.
I also love Gaster!Sans/G!Sans/G because it morphs two characters and gives a new personality that is appealing in a whole different way. borurou made a fascinating character, that's for sure. G is often portrayed as sassy, sexy, a bit edgy, and dark. And I find it great that the creator transformed a fusion of two existing characters and made him something completely new and just...attractive, in more ways than one. I have read fan fiction, and I especially like the fics You are Untitled and The Space Between since they have two different versions that are not the absolute canon of what a lot of other G's have been portrayed as. The authors have made him for timid or closed off. It makes it interesting in it's own way to see a character in another way. I have learned a lot through giving attention to situations like this.
Now that we go over what I like, let's get back to my process. Besides my spontaneous storytelling, old-fashioned sentences structure, and necessary romance, I also have used and reused themes from my past. A huge one is bullying, a close second is past relationships. You will see bullying and just plain disrespect constantly in my work. A lot of writers create stories based off their past experiences. I am no exception. In the past, I had been bullied for years. And I also had a boyfriend cheat on me. That left an enormous impact; but why wouldn't it? It's heavy stuff that happens all the time and does not feel good. And since I have diagnosed bipolar disorder and depression among the mental illnesses I have had since birth, it feels like it hurts more.
But like many others, I use my writing as a coping mechanism. My latest chapter of fan fiction included the main character (Raven) besting a bunch of jealous girls. This might not happen successfully in life, but it helped me cope with some stuff I was dealing with in my personal life. But like Raven, I have been known to be very honest when the time called for it. I don't like lying and I try my best to be responsible and accountable for my actions, and sometimes others use that against me. It sucks, but it happens.
All the villains in my fan fiction are named after people who have hurt me in some way in the past. It might seem like revenge to include them, but it's my way of seeking closure and defeating the hurt that they left behind. A lot of people have done this, and it is all right. I will never judge someone for this since it makes sense to do it. You're not actually hurting (or killing, as the case may be) the person in reality, so it doesn't matter. If that is how you seek closure, more power to you. My opinion, anway.
I know there are a lot of things to my process that I don't see or that I haven't said. If you have anything you think I should know or that I haven't said but you think I should mention, comment about it. I might not see it in myself, which I wouldn't be surprised by. Viewing the world from a single perspective doesn't guarantee you see everything. In fact, that's as far from the truth as possible. Getting others' opinions is crucial to growth, hence why we critique others' work. Give me a shout to what you think I could do to better my skills! I'm totally up for it! And look out to the next part that pertains to my art process.
Learn about me and my writing process. Sit back and relax! I don't know if you will learn anything, but hey...never hurts to learn about someone else's style as well as what they like the most, right? An artist's style is often impacted my their preferences, so including them is always good.