One of the things I tend to do A LOT when writing is not work on my characters beforehand. Most people recommend it when creating an outline (something else I never do). I think one of my personal reasons for avoiding this is because I was never really good at it while growing up.
I was homeschooled my whole life. I only stepped foot in a private, Christian school at the age of 13, but it was only for a few months, and I was not even in my parents’ custody at the time. One of the things that was always hard for me was oral description, as well as written. This was possibly a result for my lack of interest in reading. As previously mentioned (I believe), I did not truly become interested in reading until my sister handed me a book and said “You will love this book.”
I am currently writing a new novel that will be categorized as Historical fiction. However, it is a fairy-tale re-telling, which means it may or may not contain fantasy elements, or even paranormal/supernatural elements.
I was trying to give a proper description of the prince in the story, and found myself looking at an actor’s photograph and describing what I was looking at. This particular actor was who I envisioned as the prince, so it was working rather well. One of the things I found myself describing was the prince’s eye color. The actor (Henry Cavill) has Heterochromia Iridis, so this made me work at my description. I found myself looking up words that would fit the era in which I set my novel (Medieval), so that it would not seem to modern and so my description would make sense. I also needed to make sure I was using the proper phrases in Russian. O.O Because though the novel is written in proper English, I have several Russian sayings all throughout.
Another thing I found myself doing was watching the actor (Henry Cavill) in several scenes from his movies, speaking to myself like a narrator. I did not manage to do much describing after a while, but it was a start.
Descriptions are still hard for me, and most of my writing still lacks in this area. But that does not stop me from trying to perfect it. I feel that I can do this best when I am observing another author’s work. Without being a copycat. Because not everyone enjoys a copycat.