Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Five Problems to Avoid in Your First Novel

From The Creative Penn:
As a reader or a movie goer, how frustrating is it when a character doesn’t turn out to be more than they seem? It means the writer didn’t have any insight into the inner life of this person or their world. When a character has depth, we want to spend time with them – regardless of whether they’re good or evil, sympathetic or not – we’re drawn to their story and compelled to find out more. One effective way to make sure your character is rich and multi-dimensional is to write their backstory. This backstory is written outside your novel, and it should tell the character’s individual story—where they come from, what drives them and why—along with details about their life. You can think of it as a mini history, and ask yourself what you might write if you were doing it for a family member or friend. You might include details about where they were born and who their relatives are, along with defining moments in their life, and tidbits about what they like or dislike. In other words, you would include the big things, along with quirks that make them unique. You might scratch your head and wonder why this is necessary. It’s not going to be in the book after all. Who cares about their backstory? (Read more.)

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