Practical Points for character development

Depict ordinary people in your stories – people like you & me – that’s what people are looking for

Use care in naming your characters.

no same letters, (danger of confusion – Barb, Babs) (same
number of letters – Mary, Marg)

no Jodi’s, (reader asks, “Is Jodi a man or a woman?”)

no unusual names in an occupation — PERCY as a soldier of fortune, KILLER as a caring hospital aide.

Be careful to introduce your characters in proper order – hero/ heroine first

Make judicious use of character “tags” – those particular habits, mannerisms, and gestures inherent to a personality. Pulls his ear, clicks her pen, twists her hair etc.

Keep your characters identified. The old rule says no more than three lines of dialogue without identifying the speaker

Show the character’s inner struggle. It’s often more interesting than the outer struggle.

4 responses to “Practical Points for character development

  1. I think outer struggle is just as important and maybe even more interesting. It’s how people conflict with each other. No book would stand up with one character conflicting with himself, where as inter-character conflict is endless in it’s variations.

  2. Pingback: From the Writer’s Desk: I’ll Publish When I’m Ready and Overcoming your Fears « Dare to Break Out of The Box·

    • So what have you published? When asked that question, some recommend that you lie. “Oh, me– why haven’t you read my new mystery novel? Everybody has. It’s an ebook. But it’s so popular that the server crashed.”

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