Friday, November 26, 2021

Creating Character: Use the yearning and the fear


A Characters Heart

More from my book on writing, Be The Dog, available in the first week of December.

The way to a character’s heart (and isn’t that where we, as writers, are trying to get?) is through the things he or she wants/needs/desires and the things he or she fears or the things that get in the way of what he/she wants. The things that the character does in order to get what he or she wants and the things he or she avoids to be successful in getting what they want are at the heart of many stories.

Extra: Look at fear. The character wants something. What he/she wants comes with a fear that he/she won’t get it. Say the character, male or female, wants to protect his/her family. That’s the driving force of the character. But there is a powerful enemy and by trying to save his/her town she/he is putting his/her family at risk. His/her greatest fear is he/she won’t be strong enough to protect her/his family and town. This gives you, as an author, a lot of possibilities. Maybe the enemy captures the child of our MC. They have to make a choice: save the town or save his/her child. That’s just one way this could go. You can spin out a lot of possibilities from a powerful fear.

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