​​Stream of Consciousness

About Writing     |     The Hollow Man Series, International Espionage

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I’ve probably bored you enough for now with backstories in my life. For a change of pace, I’d like to talk about my writing itself, specifically how I work with characters and settings. Both entities are essential to making a good story memorable.

My writing style is fairly visual. It’s important for me to completely immerse readers, drawing them totally into each scene. I want my readers to experience what’s going on around them, feel the excitement, and hear the voices. When many of my reviewers and readers say The Hollow Man Series should be on the big screen, I feel I’ve made the story completely authentic. For me, there are 2 aspects that make the books and their stories come to life:

First, realistic dialog is indispensable. What and how people talk makes characters come to life. Readers may skip parts of the description, scenery, and story, but for some reason they always seem to be drawn into what characters say. Dialog has to use words the way people actually speak, complete with contractions (or lack thereof), slang, accents, hesitations, word selections, physical actions while speaking, etc. Each combination is unique and specific to that one character. When you get that right, your character walks off the page, enters the reader’s imagination and joins them for the ride.

The same applies to location in its own way. The experience has to feel visually real. Would it satisfy a viewer to watch a movie set in Paris or London that takes place exclusively indoors? Probably not so much for me. It’s important to take the reader along for the full ride. Each location provides its own set of rules in which characters must make decisions.

Location challenges characters - language, culture, weather, people around them, and so on. In fact, I see each of these as their own unique character playing a crucial role in the story. It’s sort of like the three battles experts tell us that may exist in any story; man against man, man against himself, and man against nature. We all see the formation of characters in the first two, but what about the third–man against nature? I turn nature into as many unique characters as needed to challenge the protagonist.

The location, or setting, also creates the mood of the story, which helps shape emotions that a reader senses. It’s important for the reader to “feel” the environment and experiences surrounding them - the proverbial mist of the fog in London, the taste of French cuisine, or the excitement of bullfighting in Spain.

So, please check out my books on Amazon or come on over to my website and have a look around at thehollowmanseries.com.