Thursday, May 14, 2009

How to Create Memorable Characters

This week we're looking at the importance of creating vital, vibrant fictional characters. One of the easiest ways to do this is to create a profile sheet for each of your main characters. Knowing the following information before you begin writing or in the early stages of writing helps to keep characters acting within character throughout your writing. Fill in some or all of the following; add anything else you consider beneficial and you'll be amazed at the result.



Name Age Born Living

Occupation Marital Status Spouse Name

Children Names & Ages


Education Speech/Accent Hobbies/Interests

Physical Description:
Face
Hair
Body Size
Physical demeanour
Clothes

Personality:
Mild
Manic
Easy-going
Neurotic
Ordinary
Angry

Perfect:
Night Out
Saturday Afternoon
Sunday Morning


Hates/Loves/Passions/Obsessions

Favourites:
Food
Music
Film
Book
Colour:

What Newspapers What magazines

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Ways of Plotting

Hello again,

Now we're looking at PLOT which can be defined as "a causal sequence of events", the "why" for the things that happen in a story. The plot draws the reader into the characters' lives and helps the reader understand the choices that the characters make. A plot's structure is the way in which the story elements are arranged. There are many ways of plotting but the most efficient usage of wrtiting time is to advance plan your story:
  • Storyboarding: ideally using a large whiteboard draw a circle: designate one half of the circle to plotlines. In no particular order set out possibles, eg. hero has row with heroine, death of dog, presentation goes wrong.
  • Lateral: Work out in advance the sequence of what's going to happen in your story and list in order (whiteboard works well for this too)
  • Cameo writing: This is where, say, you know there's going to be a murder/a wedding and you write as the humour takes you. Obviously all your 'cameos' have to be joined up, but it is a method that can help relatively inexperienced writers or those 'stuck' on a particular scene.

Next we're going to look at CHARACTERS, the emperors of fiction