For most of my life, I’ve heard the phrase “pain builds character.” It’s true: our trials can build our character, we are made of some pretty stern stuff, after all.
But what about our actual characters in our novels?
Every writer I know has a different process for creating their novels, and the characters therein. One dear friend writes a short biography of each main character, another does a timeline, whereas I pull threads. Usually a scene comes to mind, with the emotional and intellectual response of the character. Today, I refer to this as “working.” When I was a child, I believe a few nuns (my schoolteachers) referred to this as daydreaming. 🙂
Whatever the process, our characters – both protagonists and antagonists – have lives. They are living, breathing people, and we are releasing them through the pages of a book. The development of those characters and their voices is pivotal to the development of plot. If your readers can’t be bothered to care about your characters, why read about them?
Goal for the week: character development. What does this mean to you? How do you flesh out the details of your character’s lives for your books?
While I work on this goal for myself, I’ll be pondering characters I have loved (or, “loved to hate” as is the case at times).
Every time you open a book, you see a new world, populated with entirely new people. Live within those pages, befriend those people (except for the crazy axe murderers, don’t befriend them), and see where it can take you.
Blessings to you all…