if you read extensively of one authour or artist's works, you'll tend to find similar themes, characters, and ideas. this makes sense: the mind of a poet is, as T.S. Eliot points out, the catalyst which brings poetry out of everyday experiences - and everyone has certain chemicals they're putting into that reaction, if you see what I mean. some have an alcoholic father figure who somehow continually sneaks into their writing, pulling along a trail of bottles and bar scenes behind them. some have a friend who, after returning from Africa after two years, sees the world differently from everyone else. for Charles Dickens, one of those insistent characters was his dear friend, Mary Hogarth. an innocent and upstanding young girl, she died at the age of 17, leaving Dickens behind with a hole in his life which never fully healed over. he wrote about her again and again, often casting her as the age at which he last saw her.
yesterday I took up a pen and a blank notebook and wrote out reoccurring characters that have appeared in what I've written so far. it was difficult at first to commit and say "this was the person behind this character", but getting over the feeling that someone was looking over my shoulder, eventually wrote down what I found to be an interesting assortment. ideas and general characters, such as "Child" and "Christ", came up also.
so now, do i continue to write and explore these "types", or should I try to break out of them?