So enough of me blabbering! Let's get to this pep talk (Ok, maybe I should call it the 2nd part of the pep talk, since my "update" kind of turned into one haha). I wanted to take a moment to focus on our characters.
Y'all know how much I love characterization and developing real, relatable characters. I was thinking about this recently...how much I absolutely love my book-people. Someone asked me how I came up with characters and I tried to think of a good answer but honestly couldn't come up with one. It just sounds weird to say I "meet them in my head" but that's pretty much what happens. And that's why when I write I'm always focusing on telling their story, not whatever it is I might want to put down in prosy elegance. Actually, I'm not good at prosy elegance, but we can pretend for a little bit.
Here's the thing...I actually believe a lot of writers forget that important little bit there. They focus SO much on the plot, the wording, the world, the facts...whatever. And they forget that what truly makes a story good is the characters. I would much rather read a boring plotline with an intriguing character than a super cool plotline with a cardboard-cut-out, shallow character, wouldn't you? Now I'm not saying that plotlines should be boring (forbid it, haha!). There is definitely much that can be said about a good plotline and structure, of COURSE. But I want to redirect some of that attention back to the characters.
It's amazing what comes up when you start allowing yourself to tell the character's story without any hindrance! I discovered an entirely new character, actually, who plays a super important part in my plot of "The Needlemaker" and adds yet another layer to the story. I never would have realized this if I hadn't let the main character, Kit, talk to a little girl in the street at the beginning of the book even though I WANTED him to be discovering the bad guys, lol. I also discovered that my "iffy" character in my other book, "Further Courage" isn't quite as horrible as I had always believed him... yes he's spoiled, and yes he's not got the greatest conduct at times, but it was almost shocking to me to finally understand that the view of him through my MC Melinda is more prejudiced than anything--which definitely helps develop her character even more.
But enough of my stories! What about yours? Any surprising things come about because of letting your characters "tell" the story? Do you have a favorite character? I like a lot of my characters, but one in particular in "The Needlemaker" is super fun to write--he's an extremely gray character, being neither a villain or a good character. He reminds me of a cat, actually, and he's quite the excellent manipulator. All in all he's very different and interesting to write! So let me know in the comments how it's been going for you! :)
You all have a lovely day! :)