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ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-09 12:42
Subject: (no subject)
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OK writers. Question for you. Do you ever let your characters go clothes shopping? If yes, what happens? Or am I the only one who does this?

EDIT: To clarify, I don't mean shopping IN THEIR STORY or on the page. I mean real life shopping. For clothes that end up in your closet.
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jere7my
User: jere7my
Date: 2010-01-09 19:27 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Nnnnnnnnno.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-09 23:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
For me the main drawback is budget. And them getting jealous of each other. And ending up with a closet full of clothes that aren't *mine.* Okay, so it's a bad idea but they force me once in a while.
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cornerofmadness
User: cornerofmadness
Date: 2010-01-09 19:36 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
only rarely. Like me, most of my characters tend to abhorr clothes shopping. I did it once in a fantasy piece because it was necessary for them to blend into the dress codes of a new county (and much of their clothing having been destroyed in their travels)

My writers' group hated it. They thought it was too 'girlie' a thing for fantasy. I went back, parred it down and threw in an assassination attempt. They liked that better but only by a little.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-09 23:00 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I didn't mean letting them go shopping in the story. I mean letting them shop for clothes in the real world. (*goes to edit post*)
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cornerofmadness
User: cornerofmadness
Date: 2010-01-10 02:00 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
ah, in that case, yes yes I have
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 02:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
What have they bought? And do you wear it? or do they just 'window shop'?
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cornerofmadness
User: cornerofmadness
Date: 2010-01-10 02:18 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
mostly window shop. Though one of them insisted on the military jacket from Roaman's and I did buy that
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Alan Bostick
User: abostick59
Date: 2010-01-09 20:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
OK writers. Question for you. Do you ever have to tell your characters, "You are not going out dressed like that!"?
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-09 23:01 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I do, but they never listen.
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Jules Jones
User: julesjones
Date: 2010-01-09 22:01 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
The Syndicate boys go shopping for bridal outfits in the wedding story...
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-09 23:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I meant do you take them out to stores in real life, not on the page...

Apparently I *am* the only one who does this. ;-)
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Alex-chan
User: alexmegami
Date: 2010-01-09 22:40 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
In my head or on the page? In my head, absolutely. They have wildly varying tastes and I could probably even tell you what stores they shop at with a little work.

In a story, not so much.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-09 23:03 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yeah, I didn't mean on the page. I let whatever is supposed to happen in the plot happen, and if a shopping scene or a restaurant scene or whatever is what's called for, I use it.

I meant, do you let your characters go out to the mall and pick out clothes in real life.
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Alex-chan
User: alexmegami
Date: 2010-01-12 02:10 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Usually not that I let them buy. There are occasionally exceptions to this (almost always ending with me getting much frillier/fancier clothing than I normally wear).

Most of them shop waaaaaaaay outside my budget, though. But I definitely window-shop for them.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-12 05:56 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I just realized I did write a big shopping scene in one of my books, though, now that I think about it. In MIND GAMES our heroine goes into Victoria's Secret and is terrorized by how snooty all the sales clerks are. She also doesn't find anything she wants to buy there. (Not that this has ever happened to me in real life. No, of course not...!)
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Renata Piper: blue gown
User: lyonesse
Date: 2010-01-10 01:12 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:blue gown
actually i more often encounter my characters' clothes in used-clothing stores. which i guess is kind of creepy, but there ya have it.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 02:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Used clothing stores are one of the places I let them shop, both for budget and high variation of styles/eras.
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Elle: Group intellect
User: collectively
Date: 2010-01-10 01:38 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Group intellect
Oh, sure. Mostly I end up with stuff they would like see me in rather than what they would wear, but I got in the habit of wearing wifebeaters all the time because my loudest one wears nothing else. I've bought some T-shirts on their requests as well. The budget thing is an issue - I always pull Queen Bitch status if the demands are ridiculous. *g*
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 02:05 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
LOL. I do put my foot down from time to time, but then some of them are helpful if *I* have to dress up for some occasion. They're useful that way.
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Elle: Group intellect
User: collectively
Date: 2010-01-10 02:14 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Group intellect
One of mine suddenly decided he's my goddamn personal stylist and has started insisting I spend more time on my toilette. XD It's equal parts annoying and adorable.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 03:32 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hee! I have some who complain that I should spend more time on my hair/etc but I don't listen to them.
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lioritgioret
User: lioritgioret
Date: 2010-01-10 04:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yes. But more often I make them clothing. In recent years, to save on space, material costs, and effort, I also dress dolls as characters. Many of my dolls are both "themselves" and a couple of characters. But then, sometimes the dolls also act out scenes for me. And when I was in video school, sometimes I filmed them.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 05:05 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
That's brilliant with the dolls. I think part of what happens with the shopping expeditions though is not just they insist on picking out clothes, but on interacting (or failing to, since more of my characters are introverts...) with other people.
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lioritgioret
User: lioritgioret
Date: 2010-01-10 05:20 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Honestly, I used to get "possessed" in this way by my characters a lot more when I was younger, like in high school and college -- so it seems additionally interesting to me that it's Daron who's really brought this up for you, both because he is "set" in your high school/college era (I think) and because you sort of started writing him or thinking about writing him then. I am too sleepy to have a genuine cogent thought about this right now but I'm going to think about some of mine -- it's not an experience I had thought about much in a while -- and see if I can figure out what connection it is I'm almost making here. But first, as they do not say on NPR, this sleep.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 07:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I think you're probably onto something there, at the very least the fact that he's one of the characters who has been with me the longest. He was pretty quiet for a while, but now that I've been running the novel about him as a serial, and therefore re-reading it to proofread the posts, he's been piping up again.

He also has the advantage of being a character whose story takes place on this planet in contemporary times to mine, so stuff like popular music, shopping, cars, movies, etc... are all relevant to him. He's got an opinion about everything, too.

There's also the fact that there are characters and there are personas... perhaps the only difference being that the ones I write about I label characters while the ones that just ride around in my head and help me cope I label personas. As it turns out, different personas also want to go clothes shopping at various times, but that makes sense since a lot of them exist to be a coping mechanism for dealing with the outside world, other people, and society. Whereas Daron doesn't exist for a reason. He just... is.

Hm, maybe I ought to get some sleep, too... Eventually I will probably write an essay about all this.
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lioritgioret
User: lioritgioret
Date: 2010-01-10 12:52 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I too have something here with the difference between personas and characters. During the early 1990s fad during which everybody thought they had multiple personality disorder I got very interested in the ways in which everybody, but especially writers, are always channeling different personas, and got very, very strict about not calling that MPD after I met somebody who had full-blown, out-of-control, other people who took over such that she really ended up, days later, not knowing how she got there. But maybe some of our earliest and/or more persistent characters are less different from personas? Because we needed them to be both when we summoned them/they summoned us?
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 22:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Quite possibly. There was also a theory espoused for a while, though I haven't followed where the research has gone, if anywhere, of "multiple personality order" which was if you weren't horribly traumatized you might still compartmentalize various personas or personalities, but they would still be able to talk to each other and have connected awareness.

I feel fairly certain that the main reason my gender dysphoria isn't worse is because I figured it out fairly young that consciously creating new personas, both male and female, relieved a lot of the pressure and misery of feeling out of body. I didn't develop any really convincing female ones, though, as far as I'm concerned, until I was in my 20s. Now I even have a few genuine femme personas, although some of them are sort of drag queens. But to the rest of the world, that just evens out.
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Cory
User: chienne_folle
Date: 2010-01-10 07:12 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Laurell K. Hamilton posted on her blog that she picked out a Christmas present for one of her characters and was STANDING IN LINE with it before she realized that she couldn't actually give it to him. She said if the line had been shorter, she probably would have bought it before she realized. :-)
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 07:18 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
LOL! I can definitely imagine that happening to her. She has very real relationships with her characters, it seems. Whereas mine possess me like voodoo spirits.
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Safira: writing frustration
User: safirasilv
Date: 2010-01-10 15:30 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:writing frustration
I've never let them actually BUY clothes (I have a hard enough time bringing myself to buy the clothes I want, let alone those the people in my head want), but I have occasionally seen outfits and thought, "That looks like something X wear."

It's kind of a relief that my most recent heroines are either jeans and sweaters girls or live on a different planet.
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-10 22:59 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hee, yeah, the characters from other planets I don't worry about so much!
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lizardlez
User: jean_roberta
Date: 2010-01-11 04:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I would like to see the outfits worn by your characters on other planets. :)

I would say I shop more for roles than for personas or characters, though all of these seem related. I noticed before I invented character Dr. Athena Chalkdust that I was dressing for the classroom in a kind of modified Victorian governess style (dark skirts/trousers, white shirts, wool jackets, ankle boots) - this is how Dr. Chalkdust dresses. After she was on the page, my teaching wardrobe seemed to have more versatility. :)

I believe in trying clothes on before buying them. This often prevents me from buying something for a persona who is clearly not a female of a Certain Age. :)
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ceciliatan
User: ceciliatan
Date: 2010-01-11 05:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
If I had any drawing ability at all I would draw designs for the clothing on other planets. But alas, I can only sketch with words and leave the reader to fill in the rest!
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