Write what you know.
Beena’s dialogue from Wednesday’s page was written from experience. It’s one of my biggest faults and I’m constantly aware of it, perhaps to the point of semi-paranoia. But instead of only constantly fretting about it, I decided to turn it into something creative, and in this case it took the form of Beena din Ailua’s character arc in this story. It’s one of the most frequent pieces of advice I give to people who come to me for writing tips; write what you know. I got to turn one of my biggest flaws into character development, and it became a nice moment between Danica and Beena in the epilogue of this story.
In my case, my frequent need to impress the people I admire doesn’t come off as me being a condescending, uppity… er, being aloof. I tend to come across as overbearing and, in group activities, seeming like I’m trying to take over. I don’t mean to. I get excited when I collaborate with people I look up to and I want to contribute as much as possible, in as many ways as possible, to whatever we’re working on. I want to get my hands on as many aspects of the project as I can so I can prove I’m as good as the people I’m working with, that I deserve to be there among them, and that my contributions will be beneficial to everyone. In the past my enthusiasm has gotten the better of me and those collaborations have ended much the same way as things end in Beena’s life; not with a “goodbye,” but with a “get out.”
It’s a tough lesson to learn about yourself, but you can do beneficial things with those painful consequences.
You can learn from your experiences and try to better yourself. I am constantly aware of this flaw of mine, especially in my collaboration with Garth, and for the past three years we’ve worked well together. We communicate both positive and negative feelings clearly, we compromise where necessary, and respect each other’s insight.
You can turn your faults into art. When I sat down to plot this storyline and its various arcs, the inspiration for Beena’s behavior came from my own experiences and actions. Instead of letting your flaws simply weigh on you, sitting on your heart and rotting your conscience, you can turn that lemon into lemonade by making it a creative endeavor. It can be a character trait in a story you’re writing. It can be incorporated into a dance you’re choreographing. It can be the drive behind that song you’re working on.
Whatever it is and whatever you do with it, make something out of it. Make it work for you and your creations, not hold you back. Own it, and write what you know.