Why do we meet certain people at certain times in our lives? Why do we lose people–for whatever reasons–at others? Karma? God winks? Fate? Just because? I have no clue and I’m open to suggestions. That said, as a writer, I control all those things. The Universe explains it pretty well.
Ooh! Ooh! Ooh! Silver, have I mentioned that everyone knows exactly what you’re thinking?
How else could you draw new friends from the unseen? How else would your heroes, heroines, and scoundrels know when to appear, or move on? How else would your “stars” get their cues?
True, they think their own thoughts, too. How else would you know who to cast in each scene?
Just thinking of you, and your power to choose.
© http://www.tut.com ®
Yikes… even those thoughts, Silver!
Just like the process of building a world, writers build characters–the good, the bad, and the ugly. And, okaky…also the beautiful. As a character’s creator, it’s up to us to infuse them with personality, with dreams and aspirations, with flaws, and backstory. We need to stuff emotions into them so that they seem real on the page. We move them through the story like a movie director–or a chess master. We give them motivation, words, actions and reactions.
What happens if we don’t do our job? We get two-dimensional characters. Paper dolls that we dress up in cut-out close that are too limp to stand up. Yuck, right? I mean, I played with paper dolls as a kid. Not my favorite activity but I did. I want characters that I want to play with. I want them to be friends–or lovers. I want to dislike the bad guys and boo them, cheering when they get theirs because we all know Karma’s a bitch, right? As a writer, all that is on me. I have to give the characters mouth-to-mouth, breathing life into them so that my readers feel the same way about them.
Writers, do you have an tips on creating characters? Readers, what character do you love to hate?