Thursday, August 28, 2008


Quite often my ideas come to me as characters involved in a scene. At least one character will come to me almost fully formed. I love different characters that evolve into something bigger than themselves, don't you? And I think like most writers, I fall in love with my characters and usually can't imagine ever loving another set of characters quite as much. (Although I somehow manage when the book is done.)

Here are some articles on writing great characters:

From Holly Lisle: How to Create a Character.

From Wiki (for what it's worth.)

One on characters and dialogue.

One from the co-creator of Dramatica.

Are there any tried and true things you do when creating a character? Any other articles you can share?


  1. Yes, yes I'll be working on a book and loving my characters so much I don't want it to end. And then I mourn, thinking nothing will touch me like those characters ever again.

    And then I start a new book. And I fall in love all over again! It's great.

    Thanks for the articles. ;)

  2. Thanks for the links, Kristen. Maybe something in there will spark my muse and get her moving again.

    The only piece of advice I can think of about characters is a quote I found years ago from Hemingway: "When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature." I don't agree 100% - because sometimes living people are caricatures - but it's one of those things that rolls around in my head while I'm writing.

  3. Kristen thanks so much for these articles. It's sometimes crazy how real my characters seem in my head. I almost expect them to be living in the world somewhere.

    I don't have any real advice to give except you must love your characters to bring them to life.

  4. There's a great interview with author Nalini Singh in this months RWR. After reading it, I visited her site and she has some great articles for writers. One that really resonated with me was on 'Being Mean to your Characters.'

    It's a short, but powerful read. Definitely a lightbulb moment for me, as I tend to make things too easy for my characters and easy can equal boring. Whereas being mean tends to make for a more compelling story. :)