Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Friday, February 29, 2008

In Someone Else's Shoes: Guest Blogger Stephanie Humphreys

Very often, I'm amazed at how mundane my days have become. As a teenager, I imagined all sorts of exciting scenarios for my life. I would travel the world, sing on Broadway and be a best-selling author (still working on that one). Instead, I live in a little town of 2000 people, where exciting means you said hello to three people at the post office instead of one. I often watch people around me and wonder what they do to break the monotony.

But writing helps cure all my longing for a little adventure. Through the characters I create, I can be any age, live anywhere in the world, be male or female and choose bizarre occupations. In fact, I don't even have to make my characters be part of this world.

Once a character is born in my head, I get the wonderful task of getting to know what he/she is really like. The character I've been hanging out with today loves Tai Chi and drinking hot chocolate at midnight. She is independent and opinionated. She has a secret that will change the lives of everyone around her and she is also 99 years old.

Now I'm nowhere near 99, but it's fun trying to get into her head. I'm taking all the conversations I've ever had with my own elderly grandmothers and other women I've known and trying to get a sense of what it is like to hit that age. It's interesting to think what I might be like, if and when I get there. And then I wonder how a 99 year-old would react to the situation she finds herself in, compared to a 29 year-old who finds herself in similar circumstances.

The stories in my head have been pretty interesting this afternoon and beat the social event at the post office any day. Maybe that explains why my life, which really appears very boring on the outside doesn't drive me crazy. I can always walk in someone else's shoes as I craft a character and a story. That kind of excitement suits me just fine.

Stephanie Humphreys lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband and three children. She says she has too many hobbies to mention, but that most of her spare time is spent writing. Visit her incredible blogsite, Write Bravely, at


At 2/29/2008 9:09 PM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

I'm intrigued by your 99-year-old character and her secret. Can't wait for the book!

At 3/01/2008 8:01 PM, Blogger Stephanie Humphreys said...

Thanks for inviting me to be a part of the blog. I'm looking forward to the book too, since I write with very little in the way of a plan and the end usually surprises me.

At 3/01/2008 11:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed your blog. I think my characters get into my head more than I get into theirs. Pity my husband when my character is mad at her boy friend! I really enjoy the whole thing though. I have health problems that limit my own activity so it is great fun to have my main character out doing things and being places I can't be any more. I am interested in what a 99 year old would be thinking, too!


At 3/02/2008 9:11 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

Great lesson here on characterization--a 99-year-old would definitely react differently to situations than someone 70 years younger. But not everyone thinks in those terms. I'd like to get to know this Tai Chi and hot chocolate-loving lady--and her secret. Good luck with your book, Shauna!

At 6/04/2009 9:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is the most retarded banter I've ever had the misfortune of coming across. The fact that I'll never get back the time I wasted reading this incoherent blabbering sickens me. I've seriously been more entertained staring blankly at a wall and I can assure you that such would be a much more valuable way to spend my time. To prevent further loss of my brain cells I'm going to stop thinking about this. Thanks


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