Do you remember art class in grammar school? Whenever a holiday would come up like Mother’s Day you’d make a special gift I was particularly proud of a bracelet made from a wide masking tape cardboard dispenser. Starting with that basic roll, I glued red velvet right down the center of it. I even measured and made marks all along the way just to make sure I stayed in the middle. Not satisfied with coloring I put glue along the edges and then poured silver glitter over it. For the final touch, I glued small plastic flower buds to the velvet. I was proud. On Mother’s Day I gave it to her and (being my mother) she loved it. She wore it all day but then the flowers started to fall off and the glitter started to get everywhere. So she put it in her jewelry box where it stayed until it was found again in the same spot after her death while going through her things. The point of all this is that building characters is a very similar process. First you have a basic character. There’s nothing special about them and have no noticeable attributes. Then you choose a sex for them. Let’s say female. Now she needs a name. The name has to fit the person you want her to be. This can take hours. Now think of your story and how she fits into it. Write down on a piece of paper the characteristics you want this woman to have. Then look at your story board and find places you can display those traits. If she’s a minor character you’re done. It’s just like the bracelet. It was perfect when it was first put together. If you want to keep the woman around, however, you will have to make some subtle changes to keep the reader interested. It is the same as how the bracelet changed the more it was used. When Mom wanted the changes to stop, she took it out of service. For example, if the woman is really mean all the time, then have her do something nice once or twice. Think of the movie “The Devil Wears Prada” and how Amanda is so vicious throughout the movie and then gives Andy a recommendation on a job at the end. This is character development. People want to see main characters evolve. They don’t have to completely change but something has to in order to keep your audience on their toes. It’s fun to make subtle changes. As a writer, it can get boring writing the same character the same way all of the time. Have fun with it.
Fantasy fiction is my passion. This series embodies my love for a good story and action. You will find it to be many things, but not boring! Read what you love and love what you read...