suelder (suelder) wrote,

  • Location:
  • Mood:
  • Music:

The Mysteries of Voice: Personality

Last night, I had something of an epiphany. Now, don't get too excited – I've had this particular epiphany several times. You'd think I'd learn, but no. I have to relearn it with every Work in Progress, it seems.

What was this epiphany? Oh, yeah, I should probably talk about that.

I pulled out Shattered Magic, my 2008 Nano novel and realized that my characters' personalities weren't coming through. And in a couple of cases, they didn't *have* personalities.

Basically, I don't know some of these characters well enough. And I don't know some of these characters at all. Once in particular seems to have the personality of a fish and his only roll is that of observer.

But some of the characters in this story shine through. Villar is a villain who thinks he's a hero (he dies either at the beginning of the story or just before the beginning), Erisa is the caregiver and Natayla is the "Lady of Chaillot" – all mystical, but in a powerful way.

The next step for this story is to write out backstory scenes of those characters that have no personality, so I can make them real. Those scenes won't be part of the story (well, maybe a flashback, if it fits), but that's not what they're for. They're for getting to know the characters.

Only when I know who the characters are, can I reveal them to the reader. Have you ever realized that you have a generic character taking up space in your novel?
Tags: characters, voice, writing

  • Notes from Thrillerfest: POV

    Thrillerfest is set up a little differently from other workshops that I've attended. They have three separate sections that you pay for separately as…

  • Mottos

    The problem: In some scenes, the secondary or supporting characters become generic. Any of the secondary characters could be support in this scene.…

  • The Writer's Brain – the Right Side

    There is a certain day-dreaming quality to writing. We get stuck, we distract ourselves and we daydream about the characters. Our subconscious is…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic
    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.