Crash Course Characters

I was up late last night talking to my brother who lives in Portland. We talked about games and about characters.

My brother isn’t a writer, but he knows a lot because his mind is sharp and he thinks things through better than I do mot of the time. Together we hit on some fun stuff to do to help related to my current greatest problem in fiction: Creating bettert characters.

Here are a couple of thoughts that came up:

-I’m a discovery writer, but I do better when I grow my characters before starting their stories. I still discover them, but I’m going to try to do that part in advance of the rest.

-I get very excited about settings, but settings and characters are more similar than I would have guessed. Both are made of major themes and smaller details of varying importance. Both have history. Both can change. When I think this way I bet I could spend a lot more time developing characters without getting bored or down about them.

So those two are fairly in depth ideas, and both fairly personal to me. Writing is personal, but there is one general concept I’m planning to take to heart. That last concept is all about the writer keeping himself or herself sharp to stay in character and to ask two questions:

1. What can this character do?

2. What will this character do?

Those questions need to be asked all the time, especially when the character has agency. And if this is a main character, I’d say they need to have agency in most every situation in the story. When I grow a character I get a better idea of what the answer to those questions will be in each situation.

Today’s post is all about writing, but I think its important for me to work this stuff out on a page. Fitting, too.

Have a good day folks!

* * *

Thought for the day: Don’t despair if time is never on your side. Time is not on anyone’s side.

Animal of the day: The Moose
Because a peaceful animal can still be dangerous.

Yesterday’s Words:
The room stank of burnt flesh and was littered with the black shells of a dozen fallen hunters and at least twenty of their foes. Once again, Toltuashi Expanse was the site of slaughter.


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