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Method writing?

September 24, 2006

This post entry is brought to you by Guest Writer Benjamin from Benjamin Solah: Writer and Revolutionary. Thanks for stepping in, Benjamin!


It’s time to learn a little bit about me. I went to a performing arts high school. I was selected into the Drama Ensemble since grade 7. I’m not usually an outgoing person, but I managed to be involved in acting and I loved it. I performed in musicals and plays and received a decent mark in my final exam, doing a monologue of Stephen King’s, ‘The Green Mile.’

Now, one of the main things we learn in Drama class was Method acting. It derives from Stanislavski’s ‘The Stanislavski system’ and involves an actor drawing in their own emotions and memories to take on the mindset of their character to create a life-like performance.

I got to thinking: Could this work for writing? Actors would not only rehearse using Method acting, but you would be that character, whether it was just walking around your house as that character; thinking like that character and acting like that character. Writers who are more confident with their acting might like to try just this, but in terms of writing, how do you replicate your characters thoughts? You could try writing diary entries as your character; writing letters, chatting, maybe even join a forum as your character. I think I’ve suggested the chatting thing before, and by all means, writing diary entries as your character isn’t new, but instead of being a writer writing diary entries from the point of view of your character, actually be your character when you’re writing.

What do you think? Am I thinking clearly, or am I sounding loony?

One Comment
  1. September 28, 2006 12:10 pm

    I don’t think this is crazy at all, Benjamin.

    In fact, I had to laugh when I read your post. I just bought What Would Your Character Do by Dr. Eric Maisel and Mrs. Ann Maisel.

    The book is all about putting your characters into situations and seeing how they would react. The purpose of course is to get to know your character a little better. I think character (and plot) are my two writing Achilles heel. I’m hoping these exercises help me get to know my characters just a little better.

    Better characters, better story. So no, you’re not a loon. Assume your character’s persona, just remember to come back to the real world now and then. 😀

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