Character Development...for Someone Else?
I wonder if this is doable: using tarot cards to develop a character for another person.
This seems like a weird notion because how can you rely on someone else (albeit with a deck of cards) to create your characters for you? If you successfully flash out your character because of a tarot reading, does it mean that your character is no longer your creation?
Without a question, tarot can be used as a tool to help the deck holder develop their characters.
There’s no problem when it is for personal uses. I use tarot cards to develop my characters and stories all the time, and it’s worked wonders and magic in aiding my creative process. But if someone reads my cards for me..now that does get a bit weird, doesn’t it?
I guess it’ll be okay because in a way–tarot cards act like a consultant or somewhat like a counselor. They are able to help you with your creative process by enlightening you with options or possibilities. A tarot reading on character develop, just like any tarot reading, is not meant to instruct or dictate but to help you reflect, explore, and broaden your perspectives. It can also, like the Writer’s Block Reading, help you troubleshoot and look at the possible solutions for any problems that may arise. It’s kind of like asking someone to be your beta-reader, and it’s about being open to and engaging with what the cards have to say.
One flaw I can foresee is that characters are more prone to change
…especially during the concepting change–and this change is not a mechanical or physical one, as I am led to believe–personally I believe that anything you create (in a story, in a painting, etc) is something organic, something that corresponds with your personality, your worldview, your attitudes, your experiences, and your ideas. Because of this tarot cards will probably be able to pick up the things you are brewing in your mind about your character.
But if your character is merely a construct (which in many ways it is), something that is merely a collection of random ideas grouped together to form a coherent whole–something that has no personal involvement, then tarot won’t be much help.
Writing is as personal as it gets
But then again, this is highly unlikely because each and every one of our creative process is personal. It is individual and it comes from us no matter what. We can branch out and explore something that is outside of our comfort zone, something that is outside of our knowledge (something that requires research), or something that we do not agree with–it will still be something that is borne out of its relation to us. Even if it’s something that we don’t agree with, something we don’t inherently “own” as part of ourselves, we are still engaging with it on a conceptually level and it is filtered through out consciousness. In this way, character development can, theoretically speaking, be captured through a tarot reading–because whatever we create comes from us and is inevitably part of us.
This brings me to a somewhat off-topic discussion–if you deny that writing isn’t as personal as it gets, then where is your writing coming from? Writers choose words as a means of creative self-expression. If when you are writing, you are not expressing who you are as a writer and who you are as a person, then what are you expressing? Is it possible to distance yourself from what you’re writing? Can you create something while having a out of body experience without engaging deeper parts of yourself? I don’t think it’s possible. I mean, there are genres of writing that are more technical in nature, but I’m mostly talking about if you are writing for the sake of saying something, then how can you say that it isn’t personal?
Anyway. I need to summon a few guinea pigs. I have almost finalized the Writer’s Block Spread–I actually decided to call it “Creative Block Spread” instead but I already got used to calling it by its old name. Another tarot spread working session is in order for character development…