Welcome Crystal Collier here today to share her new book and some writing tips!
In 1771, Alexia had everything: the man of her dreams, reconciliation with her father, even a child on the way. But she was never meant to stay. It broke her heart, but Alexia heeded destiny and traveled five hundred years back to stop the Soulless from becoming.
Can Alexia escape her own clock?
3 Approaches to Developing Characters
(For Different Types of Learners)
(For Different Types of Learners)
Thank you Christine for having me here today!
As a home schooling mother, I've learned THE HARD WAY that everyone has a different learning system. What works for one person probably won't work for another, so I'd like to suggest some approaches to creating/deepening characters that work for different types of thinkers.
First of all, when writing characters we need to be in their heads. Pure psychology here. That means we need to have a solid grasp of (in no particular order):
- what they look like
- how that has affected their place in society/self image
- what their greatest fear is
- what their greatest desire is
- where they live/work/go to school
- who they rub shoulders with every day
- hates/loves/interests & hobbies
- their greatest strengths
- their greatest flaws
1. Get Visual. Do you get totally inspired by pictures? Do they spring stories in your head? Do you think in images? I'm quite visual, and Pinterest & google search are my best friends. You can look for someone based on their characteristics in Pinterest, and seeing them may help formulate their style, demeanor, and values. Search further to find a room or house that looks like where you imagine them living, discover people who look like their family, track down that piece of jewelry or keepsakes that defines them. Creating Pinterest boards is one way to brainstorm. Or, if you gather up junk magazines (or the "throw aways" from a doctors office), you can make a collage.
2. Hear that? Auditory learners retain information from hearing it. (That means those teacher lectures totally bring information home for you.) If this is your strength, try people watching. Eaves drop. (Yes, I'm giving you permission.) Listen to YouTube videos of people who resemble your characters or share interests. Try turning down the volume and speaking for them. Compile a playlist that your character would geek out over. Listen to pod casts from people who share interests with your characters. Talk out your thoughts with another person and have them be your sounding board. If your character is based off someone in your life, record them doing things, discreetly. Get their unique responses to questions. Dictate your ideas into a recorder, or tell yourself about the character.
3. You just Got to Move! Kinesthetic learners are the hardest to get through a public education system. (Believe me, I know.) But movement is a method of learning. Try brainstorming while working out/jogging/etc. Act out a scene and fill your character's footsteps. (I'm not kidding. Find a room with a locked door if you're paranoid. I've done this and it is AMAZING.) Play your character's favorite sport. Paint, draw, photograph, or model with clay potential aspects of your character (such as a home, favorite place to go, a scene in your story). Build or craft something your character might use. TYPE. Get those fingers moving. If needs be, use a yoga ball to sit on rather than a chair. Try handwriting things with a marker if it's more comfortable.
And just for fun, want to know where my two main characters in the Maiden of Time series came from? I met Alexia through my dreams (2002), and Kiren from blind writing back in 1994. (They're getting so old!) I loved them both at first scene, but it took years of writing them to truly know them. I suppose that's why there's so much elation at FINALLY finishing their saga in TIMELESS. *tosses cheese confetti* It's going to be hard to set them aside to develop other writerly loves.
You can find her on her and her books online HERE.
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