Pictures and Progress

I’m in a better mental state this week. The kids are doing better, my husband is no longer on antibiotics, and my projects at work are back on track. The parental stress is still running high, but medically, I’m fine.

I’ve also gotten more words in. Yay!

Granted, I’m still 16K behind, but I made it past my block of “this character has nothing to do.” How did I get past it? I killed a bunch of people! It spawned an investigation, which escalated to her theorizing as to why the monster didn’t kill her last time, which led to her encountering invaders on their borders. Things are rolling along.

Of course, writing with children around is difficult, thus why my word count is low. But I have mastered the art of sketching while playing with my son. He’ll drive cars up my legs and over my knees, while I make sound effects and draw pictures. Am I a bad parent for doing that? Yeah, perhaps. I should be more invested in playing pretend and crashing cars into each other. Instead I’ve got the characters in my brain seeping out through my fingers.

CameronFirst is Cameron. He is usually a clean-shaven guy, but there’s something about a five o’clock shadow that I like on him. He gets pretty scruffy in Isto because he’s out in the wild, and he ends up with a full beard at one point. It’s not until he reaches the Halqua palace that he gets a shave and a haircut, and his best friend says, “Ah, there you are.”

DerekNext is Derek. This is the guy who spawned the whole writing deal. He’s the core piece to the entire story, and the maker of his own mess. But gosh darn it, I do love him. All he wants to do is live a peaceful life with the woman of his dreams and make lots and lots and lots of babies. Is that too much to ask? Of course it is! In Isto, he must leave to find a cause and cure to an illness before it kills his adopted daughter, while battling his own ailments that could result in destroying the world. No pressure. Oh, and he can’t grow facial hair beyond his eyebrows.

I’ve found I can’t draw the same face twice, so I’m practicing getting a consistent look throughout my sketches. These two are the closest I’ve come to matching the vision in my brain.

Do you have a strong visualization of your characters? If you’re unable to write, do your characters or story come out in a different way? Do you ever kill off a bunch of fictitious people just to get from one place to another?

Loni Townsend

About Loni Townsend

Wife. Mother. Writer. Ninja. Squirrel.

22 thoughts on “Pictures and Progress

  1. I’m in awe of anyone who has kids and does NaNoWriMo. Now, that’s a real challenge. I think your sketches are great!

  2. Better is good so let’s hope you’ve got a trend going. Hope the whole world is getting better.

    Great sketches. I have a problem visualizing people although I also have a problem sometimes with facial recognition especially when I have to attach a name to that face. Watching a movie with a lot of characters can be difficult for me. I was thinking I was odd, but my wife and other people have told me they have that same problem.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  3. You’re a good parent. I used to let mine give me Sharpie tattoos. They’d quietly draw pictures up my arm and I could get a little work done. Or just a few quiet minutes to watch TV or read.

    Love the drawings! How very awesome.

  4. I love your artistic approach, Loni and you are a great mommy!! Glad you are all feeling better this week.

  5. I’m blown away by your sketches! I used to draw more when I was younger. These days, not so much. So great to hear that this week is much better than the last, and that not only are you better (medically), but also writing more! Hooray!

  6. Excellent sketches! I’m impressed.
    You’re working and playing at the same time. I’d say that’s a big score.

  7. Wow, great sketches!! I wish I could draw well enough to do that too.

  8. I don’t sketch, but I do like to find images on the web that seem to fit various characters I am tinkering with. I also keep a stockpile of photos from magazines that I use to get a jumpstart on writing ideas.

  9. Love the sketches – wish I could draw more than stick figures or monstrosities.

    In revising my mystery, I killed off a second person to re-animate the story…and the detectives were sufficiently ‘animated’.

  10. Thank you, I needed a good laugh and how you got past your block did it. Good to hear everybody it doing better.

  11. When in doubt, kill people! Err…I mean characters. LOL!

    Those sketches are amazing. It’s neat to see your characters.

  12. Those sketches are amazing! I wish I could draw, especially as I was writing my short story for the IWSG contest. I do have visualizations of what my characters and my fantasy world should look like, but the best I could do was an image search. I now have a picture folder on my computer titled “Fantasy Inspiration”. It actually helped a little bit 🙂

  13. I can;t draw the same face twice either 🙁 Though I am glad to know I am not alone!

    the sketches look great and no, it does not make you a bad mom. You’re there, in the room, the kid is happy, and is spending time with you. That’s what he’ll remember. (As the child of a writer and artist who used to do similar things, I speak from experience here.)

    Yay for NaNo! I am like 10,000 or more behind myself *sigh* but I always find a good death does move things along – someone somewhere quoted something to the effect of “don’t know what to write? kill someone.” If it wasn’t 3:30 am I would look the exact quote up.

  14. I love this: “How did I get past it? I killed a bunch of people!” Such a writer thing. 🙂

    Glad you got over that block.

    Love the sketches, too. Wish I had that talent. (I could only create really poorly-drawn stick figures.) Instead, I have a (secret) Pinterest board with images that fit what I think the characters could/should/ would look it.

    Best of luck with the rest of NaNoWriMo.

  15. Glad to hear you’re doing and that everyone is on a better track!

    I wish I could draw! Since I can’t, I’ve started trying to find pics and images to convey the attitude and the mood of my characters and stories. It’s all about the atmosphere. 🙂

  16. Fabulous sketches! Glad to hear everyone is feeling better, and you’re pushing forth with NaNo. I space out thinking about stories while playing with my kid too. I do that with, well, about anything when I’m not writing. It’s is the nature of a writer! Good luck and have a wonderful weekend.

  17. Good to hear that things are going better for you. ^_^ Also, I am so very, very jealous that you can draw your characters, and so well. 😛 I have nigh-perfect visuals for my characters in my head, but I can’t draw worth a damn.

  18. Fab sketches! Also, drawing while parenting isn’t illegal. It’s inspiring, actually. Add to that NaNo… You’re the wind beneath my wings and all that. 😉

  19. You’re an amazing artist! I really wish I could transcribe the image in my head to an actual paper, like you. Alas, I cannot. But yours – absolutely brilliant!

    Glad to hear the kids and hubby are feeling better 🙂

  20. I’m glad everyone is doing better. On a side note: I’m so jealous. I wish I had the power to draw the characters from my stories. My wife can do it but she’s always busy with her ACTUAL illustration work to fancy my desires. haha

  21. C. Lee McKenzie

    Great sketches, Loni. I really like the glint in the younger one’s eye. Perfect. I always have a really clear idea of how my characters look. Of course, I can’t draw them for beans.

  22. It’s hard to draw the same person from different angles. You draw a person from the side and you wonder… is that still the same person?

    Merry X-mas!


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