Hi, Whispers readers, it is my pleasure to bring you this great writing article from one of my fellow authors at Helping Hands Press.
I hope you will enjoy the article, and, please, if you have any questions for June, make use of the comment section below.
We're also giving you an opportunity to read June's release, "Misty Hollow" - below her BIO - with buying links for either the Kindle Edition, or Paperback version.
Do check them out.
Getting to Know Your Characters Through Asking Questions
by June Foster
Characterization is one of the most vital aspects of crafting a story. Even if our plot is riveting, fast moving, and keeps readers on the edge of their seats, if they don't care about the characters, the story will flop. Readers will leave the book feeling dry and often confused.
Readers need a character they can care about. In Karen Kingsbury's A Moment of Weakness, I cried when Jade Conner lost all hope and married a man she never loved. I knew her like I know my own family members, thanks to Ms. Kingsbury's character development. It was a book I couldn't put down.
Now to be honest. I struggle with trying to write each character the same. If I allowed myself, my heroes would all be like my ideal man, and I'd pattern the heroine after myself. Heaven forbid! My readers would certainly not keep turning pages if that were the case.
So, I find ways to get to know my characters—inside and out. An effective strategy is asking questions. I devise a question sheet, leaving room for answers then get started.
Hope these help.
1. What does your character want more than anything else in the world?
2. What is his/her goal?
3. Whom does he/she dream about, yearn for, hate?
4. What virtues characterize this person?
5. What is your character’s greatest fear?
6. What one thing does your character hope no one will ever find out about him/her?
7. In one word, what motivates your character?
8. How would your character describe him/herself? (Self-concept determines destiny.)
9. What makes him/her laugh?
10. What is your character’s personality temperament?
11. What is their deepest unfulfilled desire of their heart?
12. What is he/she most proud of accomplishing?
13. What is he/she least proud of having done or being a part of?
14. What are their warts?
15. What are their phobias?
16. If they had only one day to live, how would they spend that day?
17. What kind of obstacles will most challenge them?
18. What will it take for this character to get to where they need to be with God?
19. What is the pivotal issue of faith that will draw them to a closer relationship with God?
You'll be surprised what you'll learn about your characters. They may even tell you a secret or two about themselves.
June Foster's bio
An award-winning author, June Foster is a retired teacher with a BA in education and MA in counseling. In 2013, June's book Give Us This Day was a finalist in EPIC's eBook awards and in 2014 a finalist in the National Readers Choice Awards for best first book. Ryan's Father was one of three finalists in the published contemporary fiction category of the 2014 Oregon Christian Writers Cascade Writing Contest and Awards. Deliver Us was a finalist in COTT's 2014 Laurel Awards. June has written four novels for Desert Breeze Publishing. The Bellewood Series, Give Us This Day, As We Forgive, and Deliver Us, and Hometown Fourth of July. Ryan's Father is published by WhiteFire Publishing. Red and the Wolf, a modern day retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, is available from Amazon.com. The Almond Tree series, For All Eternity, Echoes From the Past, and What God Knew are available at Amazon.com as well. Misty Hollow is published by Helping Hands Press. June enjoys writing stories about characters who overcome the circumstances in their lives by the power of God and His Word. Visit June at junefoster.com.
In Misty Hollow, a rural community of the Appalachian Mountains, the citizens forge a simple living from the land, cattle, and crops. Many are farmers with minimal education, but a strong sense of pride and respect for their neighbors and God. Joel Greenfield, the youngest son of his illiterate parents, dreams of transforming his father's rustic farm into a thriving dairy business. He learns the mayor of Misty Hollow covets the Greenfield farm because of a generations-old feud between the families. When Joel vows to God he won't fail, there's no turning back. He can't disappoint God again. Molly Cambridge moves into her uncle and aunt's garage apartment in Misty Hollow and has a heart to fight illiteracy for local women who are in subjugation to the male-dominated society. Molly uses her vocation as a third grade teacher to ensure the children under her tutelage have an opportunity for a better life. After a storm blows Joel into Molly's life, she can't deny the chemistry between them.
Kindle Edition: http://amzn.to/2adcnqt
Paperback Version: http://amzn.to/2adcy52
Thanks, June, for being my guest today. I love this list of . . . I guess, you might call a character interview. God bles you in your writing endeavors for Him, and to His glory.