Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Authentic Characters


                                     Carrie at In the Hammock Blog

Congratulations! We'll get Allegiant right out to you!!

Yay for the giveaway!! Thanks to all who entered!



Why do we love them? Hate them? Love to hate them? We've all sympathized with the nasty villains, or hated the heroine because--how could she not see that coming???

I have a tendency to get attached to certain characters. Everyone has a favorite. Don't deny it! :)

So, what's the recipe for a favorite character? For me, it's the character's voice and authenticity that draws me into a story world, and then, I'm hooked! I'll buy all the books in the series or stalk the author to see when their next book is coming out because I'm 100% sure I will love it.

For instance, Buffy. You've seen her here on RW. She iconic.

Why? She's a mess, but she fights through it all. Loss and pain, she's got it covered after a few tears, or not. Things happen that are out of her control and we watch to see what she'll do. This is the kind of character that will connect with the reader.

We've talked about interviewing characters. Here's some questionnaires extraordinaire that might help you write the I-can-touch-you, you're-so-real-to-me-it's scary characters.

Most of all, we have to stay true to who our characters tell us they are. We can't shape them. They shouldn't reflect us, they should surprise us. As writers, we should respect their perspective. Even if it goes against what we think is right or wrong. The character has an idea of what is best for them even when we're screaming, "Don't open that door!"

That kind of character might be intimidating to write. He or she will have a voice--one that can't be tamed.

What if that person is awful? What if he has bad habits that are distasteful even to you? Is she or he dealing with something that is beyond your knowledge? Dive into research and interview people who have dealt with things outside your scope. Be bold and write a character that will jump off the page!

Will you take the challenge and write a character that is authentic? Even if it's scary? Share with us! We want to know!


  1. Thank you so much!! Great reflection on good characters :)

    1. Excited you won!!! :) And thanks! :) I always enjoy interviewing my characters. They tell me such interesting things about themselves. ;)

  2. Diane, I absolutely love this: "As writers, we should respect their perspective. Even if it goes against what we think is right or wrong."

    Characters are always what make me fall in love with a book!