Writing & Inspiration

Creating a Character – 01

One way to improve your character detailedness

(Part 01 in the Creating a Character Series)

Creating believable and realistic characters for your audience to engage with is one of the key ways to make your story successful. The characters are usually what dominates your story and idea. We follow the story through characters, so it’s important to make them have a full backstory and to know quite a few details about them. This makes it easier for us to believe in the character and connect with them.

I’ve found a simple way to help with deciding on how well you know your characters and how believable they are.

Make a short set of interview questions to use on your character. You might ask how that works as they’re fictional and the only way you can talk to them is through your imagination. Well, this is exactly how you talk to them, through your own head. You’re the one who created them so you should be able to write their answers for them. This helps you to get into the mind of your character and develop bits of their character you may not have thought about before.

Simply think of as many questions you want, I’d start with 5, and below each, answer them how you think your character would reply. Even if they’re simple things like ‘what’s your favourite colour?’, this is all helpful in creating depth to your character. Even if you never write about how your characters favourite colour is blue at least you know, proving that you know your character inside and out. This makes it much easier to write about them or in their voice as you get more familiar with them, thus making them more believable and realistic to the audience.

If you’re stuck for some questions, I’ve written a few ideas below:

  • What’s on your desk? Or if you don’t have a desk, why not?
  • Who’s your favourite person? Tell me about them.
  • If you do, what sort of music do you listen to?
  • Where did you grow up?
  • What’s your most loved possession?

These are only a couple of suggestions but there are many more you can come up with. The aim is for the questions to help you think of things you’ve never thought about your character before or it can just be really fun to answer questions in the voice of your character. It will hopefully help you bump up the detailedness of your character/s.

Let me know if you try this method out and how it went/what your thoughts are on this process. 🙂

p.s. This is hopefully going to be part of a set of blog posts about creating characters (which is why it’s numbered 01.) More to come soon!

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