Although I’m out on the road with Knight and the Prankster Duo visiting Grandma’s House, over the hills and through the snow, I wanted to share a very short blog post with you all. Plus, I have to let you all know that the awesome Faith Hunter, author of the Jane Yellowrock novels will be visiting us next week, so mark your calendars and come help us welcome her to our lovely and slightly noxious Swamp!
While we traveled over the roads and pathways, I began to ponder some of the reasons behind the “why”s of my fourth of novel. Things in the Kyn world are a bit unsettled at the end of Shadow’s Moon, so now we have to fill in the blanks. One of the things I’ve learned from the first three books, as the writer you best know the “why”s behind the story. Why are your characters acting this way, why do they need to address these questions, why are they doing what they’re doing, why, why?
Once you have an idea of the answer, then you can start your story. I know where I want to start the fourth book, I know who the main characters are, I know what problems they are going to face, I know why they act the way they do, but this time, I need to know what they’re going to do to solve these problems and why.
Character motivation and character evolution is critical to a good story. Your characters, especially in a series, have to continue to grow and evolve. Not just in an emotional sense, but in the challenges they face and how they triumph over said challenges. Sounds easy, right? It’s not. For me, my characters have become real people, and rarely does a person have just one reason behind why they do something. There are always a multitude of factors involved no matter how complex or simple our decisions. Getting this across in our writing, that’s true talent.
For the writers out there, how do you figure out your character motivations? Do you do interviews, use worksheets, just know because your crystal ball has fantastic reception? I’d love to hear.
For readers out there, how complex do you like your characters? Do you enjoy it when there are multiple factors playing part in their decisions and actions or do you like things straightforward and simple? Share, please.
Since I have to pay attention to the road as I’m the one in control of the vehicle, I guess I’ll let you go until next week. Remember, Faith Hunter is coming, so make time and visit with us!