Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Inner Child

We each have within us a a portion of the child that we once were. A remnant of our childhood that survives the eroding nature of time and responsibility. It is the part of us that still finds joy in simple beauty and every day miracles. This is our inner child.

No matter our age or station in life, this part of our ID still effects us. Whether it is the empathic joy we feel when a baby laughs or the pebbling of our skin when a passage of music touches our soul, it is our inner child that is reacting. Such things bore past the inured shell of diffedence that we wall up against the world to remind us that there is still a part of us that can still laugh and hope.

And yet....

There is vulnerability there as well. Childhood memories of things that did not bring joy. The dull sadness of never being invited to parties. The bitterness of leaving behind the fragile roots established in transient towns as your family moves from one place to another. Scars left on the psyche by cruel taunts and slurs from those around you. And beyond these, there are those things that would all but destroy the innocent within.

Like a Russian nesting doll, the innermost figure is who we all are at the end of all things. This, I believe, is true for all of us. And if it is true for us, then it must be true for our characters. Underneath it all, do you know who they really are? Would your antagonist answer the plastic phone if a two year old handed it to them? Would your protagonist have the strength or courage to forgive? These are the things you, as their creator, must know for them to survive in the reader's imagination.


  1. Nicely done, well said. My past, my childhood, as you know was full of moves and I think it can't but affect me when I write and how I write and the type of characters I create.

  2. Beautifully written and true. Moments of doubt and fear of being left out -- and in many cases, validated in my lonely past; they come back to me as if it happened yesterday whenever I am stressed at work or worried about my eroding writing skills or anxious about what tomorrow might bring... It is no coincidence that my characters put on their best face when in a crowded room, yet overthink in degrees of certain collapse when alone.