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Monday, November 28, 2011

Bring Your Character to Life

One of the many problems I faced with my first book, To Tell the Truth, was my characters. They had no dimension. Anna Kayce, my protaganist came across as flat. I'm talking flat as a pancake, a very thin pancake! So I hit the books! I read every book on writing I have, and I have about 75 books on writing. That's a lot! I followed every suggestion I could find. I took my character to my critique group and did everything they suggested. Feeling somewhat discouraged, I put my manuscript away for awhile. Then one day, my favorite writing magazine came in the mail and in it was an article that changed everything for me.

It had an article in it on creating characters, and there were several suggestions, most of which I had already done or just didn't feel was for me. But there was one, and all it takes it one, that kept talking to me even after I had closed and put away the magazine. It said to write an interview of your character. So I sat down and did just that.

What did I learn from this interview? Well, I realized what I was missing was a very important connection with my character. I wasn't getting into her mind. I wasn't feeling her emotions, and yes, there is a difference between just writing how she feels and feeling her emotions. So I put myself in her place. What a difference it made. She began to come alive. She became real. She became me.

Faye M. Tollison
Author of: To Tell the Truth
Upcoming book: The Bible Murders

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