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Creative CoachingEditorial Development Publishing Consultation

Character  Development

Take a look at your favorite book. Why is it your favorite? Is it because of the exciting plot or the incredibly detailed setting? Or is it the emotional journey of the character that pulls you in time and time again? More often than not, the character is what makes the journey remarkable, just as the characters in our lives--our friends, family, and peers--give our own story meaning. Together, we’ll identify your characters, discover their backstory, and find out how to make each and every character a memorable one.

Choose from one of the listed session topics or create your own!

Duration: 1 hour | Cost: $75

Getting to Know You
Is your character street smart and book shy? Do they walk with a limp or speak with a lisp? Do they have an affinity for statistics but a passion for art? Your characters have their own unique set of characteristics that helps to distinguish themselves for the reader and define who they are. The more you understand your character, the more complex they are; the more complex they are, the more distinct and memorable they become. In this session, we’ll review your character’s individual traits, discover what it is that makes them unique, and find ways to add depth that can further enhance your story.

Creating Backstory

Unlike in books, life doesn’t begin in the middle of things. Everyone comes with their own history and family tree, experiences that shape our motivations, and events that help us become who we are.  In short, we all have a story. Similarly, your characters also have a story, and it’s up to you to find it and share it. Don’t forget your secondary characters! Just as strangers in our own lives play a role in our story, so do the minor characters in your novel, with their own traits, motivations, and history. In this session, we’ll look at the concept of using backstory to create complex characters to enrich the world you’ve created.

Based On A True Story

The old man eating his lunch on the museum steps, tapping his foot in time with the music from passing cars. The young woman stuffing grocery bags in her tiny, two-door hatchback to take to the food bank where she works. The teenager strumming his second-hand guitar in the middle of the town square… Unique, memorable people cross our paths every day, fueling our imagination and providing ample inspiration for our stories. In this session, we’ll discuss how to draw from that inspiration by merging what we see in the real world with who we want our characters to be. We’ll play with a combination of personality traits, craft back-stories, and use real-life observations to create authentic characters and see how they might fit into the world you’ve created.

A Rose By Another Name

Some writers might argue that a name doesn’t matter when it comes to character development, but would a rose smell as sweet by any other name? Okay, so that’s Shakespeare. But the infamous bard was onto something when he penned those words. Would Romeo be such a romanticized character if he traded names with Tybalt or Mercutio? Would Katniss Everdeen be such a memorable heroine if she were named Katie? What if the monster in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein had a name at all? Would it humanize him or would he still be viewed as a monster? Names matter for characters as well as ourselves, becoming a part of our identity and shaping the way in which others view us. In this session, we’ll look at the characters you’ve created and determine just what’s in a name.

Create Your Own

Create your own session to help add depth to your characters!

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