I’m in the midst of writing, everything is going along fine, and then – BAM! Roadblock.
I’m sure a lot of writers can relate to this same scenario and it’s very frustrating. So frustrating in fact, that this is the time when writers usually give up on their story, claiming that, it was obviously no good anyway or it would have all come together the first time that you put pen to paper.
Writing is work and rarely does a piece of writing fall into place without you (the writer) probing into your plot and (most importantly) questioning those characters!
So start asking them some questions! I find the following most helpful:
Where does your character come from?
This question may or may not be tied to the plot, but it’s a good question to ask because it can help shape the personality of your character, your character’s motives, their station in life, etc.
What’s their weakness?
Indiana Jones was afraid of snakes. Everyone has a weakness, it’s what makes us human. Use this question and information to your advantage.
How old are you?
Again, simple information, but it’s something that needs to be answered as it will help flesh out the character and their experiences. A person in their 50’s is going to have a much more different approach to life compared to someone who is 13.
Do they have any enemies?
Tied to the plot once more, but this question is a must to ask! More often then not, you’re going to get a plot going from this question. Just keep in mind that an “enemy” does not need to be a person. It could be an addition, disorder, etc.
So there you have it! These questions are sure to help you as you begin your your writing journey by creating your characters!