Identity Theme of Milton Ways (Step 5a)

My Identity

Identity seems to be my theme this week. As you can tell by the title, I focused on the identity of my main character, trying to understand his motivations and drives. I’ve also been looking at my writerly self as part of my university course. To be honest, I didn’t understand a lot of it. I’ve had to find out so many definitions and watch so many videos on philosophers and psychotherapists. And now I can safely say, that I’m no closer to knowing who I am than I was before. In fact, what I did know I’m a little more uncertain about. 😛

But this isn’t my cathartic writing journal; this is my experimental writing journal where I get to explore my ideas, my characters and different styles of writing (I’ll complain about my lack of understanding on my university discussion board.). For this part, I’ve deviated from the snowflake method to create my character profiles. These are called identity themes.

I’m not going to take you down the rabbit hole of what an identity theme is, it’s far too complex to explain and I haven’t got my head around it either. This article by Katie Summers gives a fair interpretation of Norman Holland’s work into ‘Identity Themes’.

Primarily, I’m using it to create a theme around my characters, so I can get a fair idea on how they would react to different scenarios. The questions were derived by Dominique Hecq for one of my tutorial tasks. I thought they’d be a great tool to use in my character creation (even though I’m not using them correctly).

Split Identities

As you can tell from the text below, my main character has split identity themes. On one side, he is melancholy, a being who has lived too long and wishes for meaning in their life. The other is a fun-loving lunatic, almost Deadpoolian in his ways. It’s this conflict that is the source of the story’s most significant plot device, as well as the other stories if I decide to continue.

Since this took longer than I thought to develop, I post the other identity themes in the next coming weeks. I think we can all agree that having well developed characters is essential when writing a story.

Milton Ways

Question 1: If you had three wishes what would these be?

  1. To know who I am and why I’ve never met anyone like me so that I’m not alone.
  2. To know why I’ve lived so long and have the abilities that I do; such as the ability to merge with objects and manipulate things.
  3. To know what is happening to me and why I’m causing rips in the fabric of space-time.

Question 2: What is the most crucial issue in the world today? Why?

There are wars, there are diseases, there are famines. It’s ongoing. It’s almost a constant in the universe. A constant I no longer want to be a part of. I know there’s good in the universe too, but it’s always drowned out by what is bad. I tried making a difference a long time ago but it was simply not enough.

Wow, that sounds like someone who has lived way too long in this universe. I’m not always like that. I have my sad moments for sure, but I do appreciate life; just wish there were a lot more people who did as well.

Question 3: Is there anyone you would die for? Who? How does that make you feel?

No, not really. I’ve had friends. I’ve had loved ones. I’ve watched them all die, yet I can’t die myself. I try these not to get attached to anyone because I know how it will play out and I’ve done enough hurting in my time. That’s why I need to get out of here.

As depressing as that sounds, I have to agree with my melancholy self on that one. It’s cool at times, to not die. I’ve gotten into some crazy shit over the centuries, but after a while, without an end, my life becomes a little meaningless. So to answer your question buddy, I would die for myself. However, for the sake of all life in the galaxy and maybe in the universe I have to get away until I get a handle on my situation.

Question 4: Where would you like to be in twenty year time? Why?

I would like to be away from anyone or anything I could hurt or destroy, because something is happening to me, and it’s raining destruction over the galaxy. I could trigger a war that could mean the death of billions perhaps trillions. That would be devastating. The responsibility is too much.

And you know what my old Uncle Sven used to say, with great responsibility comes many reboots of your franchise. I don’t want my story retold by younger versions of myself.

Question 5: If you were able to erase one memory, which would it be and why?

To be honest, there are too many to count. When one lives a long life as I have, you have many regrets and have to live with them for a long time. I wish though I didn’t remember when those I cared about passed through the veil, especially Derrick. Witnessing his death, his murder made me realise that my presence in the universe was a danger to others. They were trying to get to me through him. From that point on I made sure that I didn’t create strong connections with people.

However, that doesn’t mean I can’t have fun. I may keep people at arms-length, but it doesn’t mean I live my life as a hermit. That would suck and be a waste of my abilities.

Question 6: What is your biggest fear? Why?

To watch the end of the universe. To not know who, what or why I am. There must be some reason I exist and can do the things I do. Why must I remember everything, yet not remember where I came from?

Yeah…. I get existential like that at times. The whole ‘what is the purpose of my life’ shit. Look, I would like to know who I am, and if there is anyone who is like me, but for the time being I just want to know how to stop these seizures. Hopefully, I can find something that does before I have to try the unthinkable.

Question 7: What gives meaning to your life?

I don’t know anymore. I’ve lived too long.

Ditto on that.

For More

This identity theme is not set in stone, so there may be glaring inconsistencies I have not seen. If you see anything let me know, or add comments, suggestions or ideas on our FacebookInstagram or Twitter pages.

If you would like to see my revised steps click here. I’m not going to update the previous pages because I want people to see how and why I changed it.

Happy writing to you all.

Photo by Smit Patel on Unsplash