Laurus (laurus_nobilis) wrote in originality_lj,

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The use of checklists

Recently I've seen that a lot of people use checklists and surveys to create OCs- just look at this forum in Fiction Alley. People know their OC's shoe size, exact weight and favourite bubblegum flavour before they even start writing.

Do you find that useful, or even possible?

I for one can't think of all those details beforehand. I've only been able to complete surveys in OCs' point of view after I've written about them (or at least after they've lived in my head for long enough, in the case of eddie_lupin) but I find it impossible to complete checklists beforehand. I just can't say "her virtues are this, this, and this, her flaws are this and this, and she needs a quirk so, I don't know, she'll wear too much lipgloss". Every time I've tried this it came out as too arbitrary.

I hear this is easier for people who've played games like Dungeons and Dragons, where you need to have the details from the beginning. But I simply can't do this. Usually when a characters comes to my mind I only know a few main traits about him/her, while all the other quirks develop later, when I've been writing for a while. It means that I often rewrite a lot, because something that happened earlier seems out of character now; but I get to really "know" my characters that way.

What do you think of checklists? Do you use them?
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