“Stories have a power, a magic all their own. Consider the fact that the actions, thoughts and feelings of people who have no existence in reality can make you laugh, make you weep. That’s the art and that’s the magic.”
My favorite books are not those with crazy plots or dramatic scenes. While those don’t hurt, I love them because I love the characters. They were written so that it made me care about what happened to them. A connection was made, and I was hooked.
To be able to connect with characters, a writer must be able to express their complex emotional side. Boring characters will make even the best plot fail. If you want to create a memorable to story, you have to create memorable characters. No way around it.
Most of my ideas for a story begin with a character. They are born in my imagination and slowly begin to grow. I begin to question who they are, where they’re from, and what they need. From that, a story forms and my words breathe life into them.
Sounds easier than it actually is. For me, it’s a long process to get from character to story. Some people help build their character by creating a profile or conducting an interview with their fictional friend. I’ve never been a huge fan of doing that.
I ask myself a few simple questions to get started and build from there.
- How old are they?
- Where are they from?
- What is their home life?
- What personality type are they?
Once I figure out the answers to those questions, I move on to my favorite part. Research. Age, setting, family and different personality types all contribute to building a believable character that readers can connect to. After I have the building blocks of my character laid out, I know how they will act and where to take their story.
I have a notebook FILLED with different character sketches, personality types, body language… You name it, I’ve researched it! If you’d like a copy of any of them, let me know. I’d be happy to send them to you or post them here!