Monday, 8 June 2015

Busy Working - Building Characters...

I've just about finished my character biographies, and they have been a revelation.

Now I'm anxious to get back and start building the story to completion.

It is only the first draft, but already I can see where I need to add scenes or incidents earlier on in the draft, as the character bios have provided information I was unaware of when I started writing the story.

There's a couple of areas of research that I still need to do, but they can be done as I go along, so by the time I'm ready to tackle the second draft I'll have what I need.

Also I feel I have finally found a system that works for me, and I'll continue to use it for all my longer stories.

I'm flexible enough to make changes in the plot if they're needed, but just being able to write down chapter outlines helps me know where I'm going - even if some bits do get changed around.

Clearing my head of the ideas and scenes, and then concentrating on my characters' secrets has been like taking the icing off a piece of fruit cake, leaving the delicious part to be exposed and savoured.

Like cake...
(This could just be that I feel hungry after this latest writing session of course, and I like eating cake- occasionally.)

So I'm off to follow up on one of those vital research areas...

Image courtesy of Apolonia/


Anonymous said...

It's always good to have a model that works for you. You sound very organised, Carol.
(I liked the cake imagery, btw!)


liz young said...

Actually to write a biog for each character is dedication indeed. I tend to wing it, fleshing them out as they talk to me durint the building of the story. Perhaps I shoud try your method!

Carolb said...

It's taken a few years to find what works for me, Helen, and hopefully it will help my productivity.

Though being organised probably only applies to the writing and research. :D

Carolb said...

I've found writing a biography of each character really helpful for making sense of their attitude and reactions, Lizy.

Depending on whether it's a secondary character, or a main character, I can write anything from 500 to 1,600 words, and I'll probably add other thoughts as I write. It all helps clear my head so I can write their story.

Susan A Eames said...

I've never managed to write character biogs successfully, but that may be down to impatience to tell the story. I build the character as I write instead - but maybe I'll try the biog route again.

Carolb said...

It doesn't work for every writer of course, Susan, but a simplified version could be useful for consistency. That might help later on- checking hair and eye colour for example which could get changed during writing.

But don't worry if it doesn't work for you; we all work differently. :-)