I have so many role play ideas in my head and think about this stuff before I have a chance to role play... and then if I have an opportunity to do it, I freeze up and just leave. Does this sound familiar? Any tips?
Sorry if this is not appropriate here.
You don't have anything to lose by pursuing a storyline as long as you're not breaking any rules. Some things don't work so well within certain cities -- that's an opportunity to reconsider if that city is a good fit for your character. If not, there's another storyline for your character.
Being creative is awesome and creates so much value for everyone playing the game. For the sake of all of us, please don't be shy!
1. Start small. This is very important. Don't get hung up on doing too much too fast.
2. Whenever you are thinking about something, write it down. I like to save stuff in text files and come back to them later.
3. You could write out a simple skeleton of general concepts if that helps.
"My character is originally from a swamp village. He has a mohawk.
He had a pet bird once. He likes licorice. He hates seeing people unfairly treated.
He doesn't stutter because he's tough and that's an overdone trope anyway."
Once you have this down, act and react to any circumstance with your foundation in mind.
4. Write out (very simple) practice emotes that you think would be appropriate if you have to, just to get a feel for it and not be so nervous. When the time comes up you can c/p if you have to.
5. Copy + paste RP logs into text files. See that really cool thing that this person did? You can something do that too. Save that and look at it later for ideas.
6. You know the canned emotes? Alias new, custom ones over them. Your mouth doesn't have to turn up as your face breaks into a smile. What if it is lopsided? What if it's a very small smile? What if only the corners curl up? What if it's a giddy, manic display of pleasure? What if you smiled different ways for different occasions. What if you never, ever smile (people notice this too).
7. You don't need a grand backstory that results in a description that is one big scar with bulging muscles at 18. Start small.
8. Get out and meet people. Achaea is a multiplayer game full of characters with different backgrounds and skills and histories and knowledge and likes and dislikes. Some people are dicks and some can't be bothered and will ignore you. Most are really nice, receptive, and really enjoy seeing people try.
9. Start small. I'm serious. Doing a lot all at once tends to overwhelm people (yourself included). At worst it looks attention-seeking. At best it feels contrived and pat and you may get stuck on where to go next. You can be methodical with your opportunities but try to act natural and just have fun.
10. Don't sweat the small stuff. If you mess up, people are usually very forgiving.
I have a HUGE fear of improv anything, could never do improv jazz in piano, sucked at speaking foreign languages, etc. because if things weren't pre-planned and I hadn't memorized them ahead of time I panic and freeze up. I had that with RPing at first and still do occasionally but thanks to getting to RP with people who are really creative and great with it and also very non-judgmental and supportive, I've gotten more confident at it. I think over time you probably will, too.