Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing, and Publishing ~

Short and Sweet Advice for Writers: Understand the Role of Your Characters


Since one of the characters in my novel was also a “co-author” of that novel, I totally appreciated today’s re-blog :-)

Live to Write - Write to Live

Share only enough character detail to enable your character to play his or her role well. The rest is irrelevant. Share only enough character detail to enable your character to play his or her role well. The rest is irrelevant.

Characters are not real people. Even characters who are based on real people are not, actually, real people. Characters are carefully crafted facsimiles of real or imagined people, designed to play a particular role in your story. 

I have heard this truth many times before, but episode three of Jessica Abel’s podcast, Out on the Wire, really drove the fact home. (FYI – I gushed about Abel’s podcast in the Mar 20 Shareworthy Reading and Writing Links post.) In Walk In My Shoes, Abel explains how characters are puzzle pieces in a story, and just like any other story element, characters have a functional role to play. For this reason, it’s important not to get lost in all the available details of a character’s life and personality.

As the…

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