Friday, January 23, 2015

Character Building Outline

We had a wonderful class last Saturday. We celebrated Jodi's success and we discussed ten mistakes publishers deal with on a daily basis. Lot's of great discussion and it helped to remind my group of some of the creative writing skills you need moving forward.

I thought, since one of the main topics in class was character building, I would touch on that subject. Although I've written about it on here in the past, it has been a while. Maybe a little brushing up is in order.

Your characters need a life of their own. Just like in life, everyone is different. The most important being your protagonist (main character), secondary characters, and the villain (antagonist).

When I began Fable, I had started a list of my characters. I entered their attributes, part in the book, and relationship to the other characters. An outline of your characters is just as important as an outline of your story.

As time went on, I was given a wonderful suggestion, build on that list. You need to outline each of the characters traits and past.

I began with simple things, such as quirks, and gradually built up a little story for each of them. Such as - who were their parents, birthdays, how did they grow up, and continued to add as time moved on.

Although no one will read this but you, it helps you when you're in a scene to think about what would a certain character think or do in that situation. It brings the ordinary character to life. 

In Djenrye, my made up fantasy world, the characters sound a lot alike, only because they talk different than what we're used to. But I've devised a way to give some of them different accents and some different quirks. 

There are some who react, and some who are cowards. There are the brave, and the weak. And there are the different races who will act and sound different from all others.

Even though in fantasy fiction writing it seems much easier to pull this off than the ordinary guy or gal, it still the same scenario. You need to figure out if that particular character is a loser, an ego-maniac, sweet, evil, etcetera. 

It actually can be fun to figure out their personalities and build on them.

So the next time you sit down to write, start with your character outline. I think once you have an idea how you want that character to behave, you'll find they will start telling you. When they do begin to talk to you, you'll understand how alive they really are!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone and just to let you know I have a rafflecopter contest on my website today. All you have to do is answer my question and join in on the interaction when you can. You can gain an extra entry by signing up for the website newsletter. Giveaway on Blog Talk

Until next Friday, have a good one!

Love, Lisa

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