Posted by: cmittermeier | March 7, 2012

Writing our stories – transferable insight

When I first started writing, all my female characters are super strong.  I remember once trying to write a 24 hour period, the girl never rested, never cried, she had all the solutions… That is why I had someone reading my draft specifically for character development.  The funny thing was, my male leads had issues.  The book turned out to be about his personal growth not hers.  For the moment, I am pondering how this relates to me.

We all have masculine and feminine aspects, and as I reflect on myself and my writing, I am drawn to the treatment of my men.  They are, generally speaking, much more realistic characters.  They have faults that create problems for themselves and others.  When things go wrong, they sometimes storm off to avoid things.  Those traits are often harnessed for good.  There are times to fight and times to walk away – the secret of success is to know when to do what.  For these men problems were created because they chose the wrong response, but of course, in the end they get it right just often enough.

When I think of my feminine side, I rarely think of the times its gotten me into trouble.  For me, it’s generally been my masculine traits that throw me off the rails.  I describe myself as more of a tom-boy than a girly-girl.  I love walking in the woods and much prefer a good hiking shoe to a dress pump.  I am in general not a gossip, I don’t get the malicious female thing.  I’m afraid I lack that subtlety, when I’m mad I’m more apt to want to punch a door than twist my words into your back.  My feminine side is the compassionate, protective mother-bear, level-headed seeker-gatherer.  My masculine side is the leap-before-you-look, strong-arm, adrenaline-seeking.

My men tend to make decisions for others without consulting them.  They barrel ahead on their own logic, and only an equally strong force will entice them to look for something more.  They cannot be lead to water, but with adequate boxing can be made to look up and see the water in the horizon.

This is why I do not respond well to personal training.  Yes, I need external structure, but I do not respond well to being pushed.  I decide where I go, period.  When I look at my health, God is boxing me in.  He’s getting me to look up and see the water, but He’s a gentleman and is waiting patiently till I take the steps myself.  Yes, he’ll pat my backside to get me moving, but he lets me choose the pace, the method, the specific direction.  Example – I must exercise daily, he doesn’t care if its walking, biking, aerobics.

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