Technically, I don’t have writer’s block. I just don’t have anything good to say or at least I can’t think of anything good enough to write down. I did work on my NIP (novel in progress) for about half an hour earlier this afternoon but was quickly sidetracked. You see, I had spent the better part of the day in a kid’s dentist office. After the initial discussion on The Tooth That Must Not Be Named, otherwise known as the tooth that cannot be saved, I had nothing to do except wait while a routine cleaning took place on my teenager's teeth.
As with all times that my brain is not actively engaged in some activity, it detoured into other areas. Blocking out the sound of children screaming in adjacent rooms and well intentioned workers attempting to be kind and funny, I focused on my writing (in my head that is).
Well first I focused my thoughts on the oral surgeon with whom I was destined to meet in the very near future. This oral surgeon will remove the uncooperative tooth and will then remove three of the never to see the light of day wisdom teeth. The fourth wisdom tooth has been granted a stay of execution unless he causes problems later but we’ll see.
Anyway, off in my own little world, I was debating on possibly adding a new character or two. I wiped out a vast majority of people not too long ago. Now, given the different turn my created universe has taken, I might require some add ons. When I returned home later, I got to work on the idea.
Stumbling through the internet, as I am wont to do these days, I encountered a website that offered to help me create characters. As those of you who have read my prior posts on creating characters know, I normally use horoscopes to flesh them out. This time, intrigued by this site, I decided to give it a go with their “Writing Character Profiles – Questionnaire 1 (Adult Characters).
It sounded like a logical idea. My young daughters happened to be in the room at the time and I thought, hey, why not let them answer some Mad Libs style questions to help me fill in the questionnaire? I’ll just ask them to give me a noun or adjective or place or number or whatever was required without telling them what it is was really about.
Their responses were nothing short of brilliant. I might just use the character they created. But I’ll let you be the judge. Here are their responses to the questionnaire:
Name (Two nouns) : Pickle Poopytooth
Age (any number): 90,000
General Physical Description (I asked for adjectives): pink, sweaty, cute, booger nose, girl, slimy, and tall
Hometown (Place): Taco Bell
Type of home/neighborhood (Adjective and noun): Gross dumpster
Family background (asked for a family type with no other specifications): big
Friends (names): Emma, Maya, Crystal, Killer, White Sea, Fofffy, Cherry and Deary
Job (asked for a job): someone that works at a haircut place
So, with their help, the character of Pickle Poopytooth, who is 90,000 years old and hails from Taco Bell which is located in a gross dumpster, was born. Pickle is a tall pink, sweaty, slimy, booger nose, cute girl from a big family. She has several friends named Emma, Maya, Crystal, Killer, White Sea, Foffy, Cherry and Deary. She works at a haircut place but we are not sure what it is she does there as employment. The possibilities are endless!
Well I learned a few things from this endeavor. The first of which, is Pickle Poopytooth will not be finding her way into my universe. Not to be all exclusive and stuff, but she just wouldn’t quite fit in. Frankly, I don’t think she could hack it in my world. And I happen to know a few of these friends of hers. Most of them are wolves, arctic foxes, puppies, snow leopards, leopards and deer. I’m shocked they even hang out with each other.
The second, most important thing to take away from this experience is that I doubt Taco Bell would give the o.k. to use their name in any story. Especially in a story that claims Taco Bell is located in a gross dumpster. We’ll just leave that one lie.
The third thing, and this is crucial, there are no haircut places in my universe. I don’t know how it is people cut their hair there or how much they pay or what other jobs might be involved. This brings to light a very important question. Should I know how people or other beings in my universe cut their hair? Is it important enough to merit any real thought? I mean, they have hair, some are very hairy and yet, no stylists among the bunch.
It will have to remain a mystery of the ages. As much as I have every other detail of my universe thought out, even those things not directly relevant to the story, it is not important. Now that I know my kids are of no use in creating characters in my universe, I have actual work to do.