So, I wanted to let my eyes rest from so much screen time today and started a journal. A little notebook I had laying around and some black ink. But I didn’t write a journal of my experiences, instead I wrote a journal from the perspective of one of my characters and her experience learning alchemy.
At first it just seemed fun. I made some changes to my hand writing so it better suited her, made a first page saying “property of… and return to…”
I started doing some world building as I figured out the basics of alchemy.
As I wrote the world became bigger, early on in the journal she writes where to buy containers for potions, in doing so she draws a little map. On the map there is a diner and pub but instead of naming the pub it says “problem pub” and has a little drawing of a knife.
Makes sense given at the time of writing this journal the character would have been captain of the guard, she isn’t going to know the name of every pub in the city but she will remember the pub somebody got stabbed in and in her personal journal make reference to it as such.
It’s world building as I figure out the alchemy system and talk about the effects of different potions on different magical species.
But it’s also character building as the information isn’t objective, there are comments in the margins about how she potions are similar to tea and both taste bad. About how magic shouldn’t be the solution to everything and she brainstorms for other possible solutions.
On the second page there’s a comment about blaming Henry in the scenario that she were to spill potions on the king’s recipe book.
Because the journal is written by a character I know not to be perfect, I don’t mind making mistakes and crossing them out. It gives the journal character.
I highly suggest this as a cool exercise with the bonus of being able to use one of those many empty journals you have sitting around!
As usual, check out my book, stories I’ve written plus other social medias: here.
Hey! Would you like to learn about the character who wrote this journal (Elizabeth)? She shows up in my book series Dear Dragon, it’s available with the link above but if you don’t want to buy the book, I’m going to be doing ARCs soon for the second, so feel free to sign up under the ARC application form! Thanks a bunch and have fun writing!