14 Jun 2017

Writing Sherlock

I have been having quite a time, trying to put my own spin on this classic character. Sherlock Holmes is without a doubt, my favorite literary character. One of the challenges I am facing is doing him justice. I seem to have no quibbles writing and messing around with Watson or Miss Hudson, but Sherlock is untouchable to me.

It has really put a wrench in my writing and outlining for my retelling. Because most of the story, revolves around Sherlock and his interactions with both Miss Hudson and Watson. Yet as soon as he steps on the scene, my brain seems to croak. I overthink  and write and erase him, saying something simple like, no. It's really frustrating and makes me hesitant to write anything.

 I know that this is a retelling and I am allowed to take liberties and make the characters my own. Not to mention this is a rough draft, and no one is going to see it.  I still have this inner voice telling me, I'm not doing it right.

I want to do nothing more that a tribute to the original, I am not trying to compete or compare with the original. Not just because I think that is impossible, but because I don't think the original needs any additions.

On top of  just trying to write him, I also have to think of a murder, that is a bit difficult for him to solve, easy-peasy right. Yes, trying to think of a case that would baffle The Great Sherlock Holmes is easy.

As you can see, I am dealing with all of this so well. Anyway I thought I would post a bit of what I have here and you guys could tell me what you think. Good or bad, I guess.

The tray rattles as I try to remember to keep a demur pace. A bead of tea slips out of the steaming pot. The stairs are worn down in spots and uneven, but after no less than four trips a day for the past week. I have grown accustomed to the precarious climb.
Loud thumps could be heard from behind the closed door. Goodness knows what he could be up to. It was half past ten, a decent enough time to make tea, compared to last night’s 3’o clock ring. He had a bout of insomnia that required both company and sustenance.
I knocked on the door, upsetting the tray and nearly dropping it in my efforts.

 “Mr. Holmes” I spattered, exasperation with him already taking its toll on my countenance.
The clatter stopped, followed by quick steps. The door was flung inward.

“You needn’t have troubled yourself with knocking; the door is almost always open.” He said gesturing me inside with a splotchy hand.

I stepped cautiously into his room, the strong smoke from his pipe made the air clot in my lungs, I coughed it out. Looking in vain at the cluttered surfaces; there was nowhere to place the now heavy tray.

“I got it old girl.” He said lifting the tray out of my hands with ease. He set it down with a clatter over some books and paper.

He laughed at the look on my face, “My apologies, I should be more sensitive to your feelings.” He poured the tea, “and age”

“Perhaps you should remember yours.” I murmured, taking in the chaos that was his rooms.

He sipped his tea and joined me in looking around. A smug smile crossed his face,

“I have been as you can tell working.”

“Is that what you call it?” I snorted, cringing at the assortment of half used tea cups intermixed with laboratory equipment.

He wasn’t abiding me anymore; he was looking at his mess with a sense of delight.- Miss Hudson


“You know how to draw your own blood?” I asked trying to keep the awe from my voice. God knows the man has an ego.

“I happen to be quite proficient with needles as you should know.”
A small smile made an appearance at the side of his mouth. His hand went up as if to cover it, but I saw it nonetheless.

“Deplorable!” I exclaimed.

“I’m not sure as to if you are referring to me or my preferences. Either one, I am inclined to agree with you.- Miss Hudson


  1. Okay, first, I understand your insecurities. I can write 3984092384 original characters, but the VERY few times I tried writing fanfiction or something it just...didn't work. I can't seem to write other people's characters. But, as you said, this is your own version and he can be however he wants. I wouldn't try to force anything. It's when I try to force my characters to be something is when they come out flat. Once I let them go wild and be what they want to be, they really start coming alive.

    But with all that said... SKYE. SKYYYYYYE. You should NOT be worried about writing Sherlock. You are 100% doing him justice. I could just HEAR him while reading these snippets, and see his gestures PERFECTLY. The snark, the cockiness, the constant aloofness. It's wonderful. And your version of Miss Hudson is GOLDEN. KEEP WRITING THIS!!! It is pure brilliance!

    1. I love that precise number :D, I know it's so difficult. It's like your changing them and not for the better, it's the worst feeling. I agree forcing things, makes for terrible characters. Great advice, I shall let Sherlock run wild! XD

      THANK YOU FOR SAYING THAT!!!! Really you have no idea, I was so worried that I was completely destroying him, and that all the Sherlock fans were going to hate me. Those are exactly the character traits I was going for, I'm so happy that he read that way. I am having a blast with her, I WILL! <3 Thank you!

  2. SKYE! It's so much fun that you're writing this! I watched an episode of Sherlock last night and just, gah, it's so great! I guess my advice here is have fun and don't worry too much -- if you're enjoying yourself, I'm sure it will come better. Keep us updated!

    1. Thanks! Sherlock is so good, one of my favorite adaptations. Great advice! I hope it will start getting easier too.
      Sure thing!

  3. I totally get the fears of writing retellings and not knowing if you're doing it right! But I think it's AWESOME you're doing a Sherlock retelling. 😍😍 And I think you'll be great! Just maybe try different things with Sherlock's voice until you find what works best for you?

    1. It's rough because I feel like no matter what I do, I probably won't 100% like it. THANKS CAIT!!!
      I think that's a good idea, just play around with him see if anything sticks.

  4. Have you read some of the original Sherlock stories? I really like how he solves crimes just by observing things carefully and then helping the reader get it, too! You feel smarter after reading an Arthur Conan Doyle story! It's like, "Oh, of course! The text of this murder message is a little lower on the wall! Therefore, it must be a shorter person who wrote it!" Then you can go back and see all the clues that gives the reader a chance to solve the case along with Sherlock! He can be aloof and stuff, but I feel like you don't have to try for the BBC level Sherlock since he basically solves crimes by magic hahaha.

    1. Yes , I am rereading them too, just because I want to stay true to the books. I did love how Arthur Conan Doyle did that. He did make me feel smart. Yes, as much as I love BBC's Sherlock, the cases can be a bit overdone sometimes.

  5. Oh, I totally understand. I can't imagine trying to retell a story with such an iconic character. But you do get to change him. I mean, after all, in every retelling that we watch or read Sherlock is never completely like the original and the retelling ones are never the same. RDJ's Sherlock is not Cumberbatch's Sherlock, and neither of their Sherlock's are Conan Doyle's original Sherlcock. They keep some things but take other things away. But still I agree, it's a bit scary.

    And the mystery part! I've always wanted to write mystery, but having a mystery to solve is the hard part. XD And writing a mystery for SH to solve sounds particularly daunting! Are you going to use one the original SH mysteries as a base for your mystery? And then tweak it a bit? Or mash two of them together?

    1. It's super hard. I try to keep that in mind, I can change him. I can make him my own. It's daunting, and I think if I change anything. Everyone is going to hate him.

      My dad told me to solve it first, then write it. Solid advice, but I am a panster and planning is something I struggle with. I'm going to use A Study in Scarlet and then have another case that coincides with it. One that Sherlock can't solve. Or he at least struggles to solve.

  6. I think these were really good! Granted, I've only seen the BBC version with Benedict Cumberbatch (read The Hound of Baskervilles , but that was so long ago, I barely remember it. :p), but I think you captured Sherlock's mannerisms and speech really well. He's a bit different from the BBC version, but I still see how this could be your version of him. :) So, nice job so far. :D


    1. Thanks Alexa! That's all I'm hoping for it that he at least resembles the character. I'm glad you think he is different from the BBC version. :D