Sunday, June 30, 2013

Start with a character and....

So last year I signed up to do an online creative writing course titled Story Structure. 
I loved it so much that I signed up for two more
And the two other courses :

Essentials of Fiction Writing and Irresistible Fiction.

Here is the link for the site,
I have learnt so much from those classes and I wanted to share part of an email that I received a couple of days ago. I get thought provoking emails from them  on how to write an arts and the one I'm going to share today is this,

Start with a character and...

A great main character will hook readers on your story.  If readers care about the character, they will want to keep reading to find out what happens to him or her.
Many fiction writers begin with an idea for a character and then use the character to come up with story ideas.  Here are some quotes from writers describing this approach.

"First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him!"
- Ray Bradbury
"I try to create sympathy for my characters, then turn the monsters loose."
- Stephen King
"Try to get your characters into interesting trouble. Allow your characters to misbehave. Let them stay out after 11." 
- Charles Baxter
"It begins with a character, usually, and once he stands up on his feet and begins to move, all I can do is trot along behind him with a paper and pencil trying to keep up long enough to put down what he says and does.
   - William Faulkner

You can get lots of story ideas by answering these questions about your main character:
1) What is something my character desperately wants?  What urgent reason can I give my character to go after this goal RIGHT NOW?  What problems can I put in the character's path to make reaching the goal difficult?  How will the character deal with each problem?
2) What is a major weakness in my character?  What situation can I put my character in where this weakness will get him or her into major trouble?  What steps will my character take to try to get out of trouble?  Will my character grow or change in the process?
Our online course Bringing Characters to Life shows how to develop characters that feel three-dimensional and real.  If you haven't signed up for this course yet, you might want to check it out. 

 Here's the link:

What wonderful quotes. I really feel that the characters you write about, do have their own personalities and traits...and yes even annoying nuances LOL. I am ashamed to say I have neglected my Characters of late and I am so itching to write...I am in the middle of a great chapter. I want to find out myself how it will turn out lol. Although at the moment packing to move has taken any spare time I have to write. I need to make time!! And to save my sanity from moving I will write, take out my little frustrations through one of my not so sweet characters lol

I would recommend these courses to anyone who wants to write a book or even a better school/college report. I have not only loved the courses, but I have learned so much. So pick up your pens and paper, or your laptop or PC and get to writing!! But most importantly have fun creating those chock-filled come to life characters.

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