I knew that C.S. Lewis and I had more in common than our Christianity when he said, "You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me." Welcome to a celebration of faith, tea, and the written word. I'm always engaged in a book, and whether it's one I'm reading or one of the inspirational romances I write, there's always a cup of tea close by. Join me in a cup as we chat about faith, our favorite books and the exciting places our reading and writing adventures take us.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

For Writers: Get to Know Your Characters

Today's post is for writers, rather than readers.

Lately, I've received a lot of questions about how I sketch out characters. Online, you can find a lot of character questionnaires to help get to know the imaginary friends who live in our heads. My version is below.

Before you start, though, I suggest you answer three essential questions about your main character(s): what does he or she want? Why do they want it? What is stopping them?

Right there, you've answered your character's primary GMC: Goal, Motivation, and Conflict. Each main character should start the story wanting something, for a particular reason that is rooted in the core of their being (perhaps related to their core wound), but has a problem getting it. And in a romance, the hero and heroine's goals often clash.

For example, in A Future For His Twins, the hero Tom and heroine Faith both want to rent the same historic property. Both have good reasons. Neither is a villain. But they can't both get what they want. Someone is going to win, and someone is going to lose...but when Tom's twins get involved, Tom and Faith's original goals evolve, with greater stakes.

Let me know if you give this a try!

Character Basics:

Full Name:
Birthday and age:
Parents’ names:
Siblings’ names, ages:
Eye, hair color, height:
Best physical feature:
Worst feature:
Clothing style:
Favorite place to be alone:
Favorite food:

Digging Deeper:

Goal at beginning of story:
Why do they want it (motivation):
What’s stopping it (conflict):
External Conflict with Hero/heroine:
Core wound:
Core need:
Lie they believe (I’m not worthy of/don’t believe in love because…):
Deepest, secret dream:
Biggest flaw:
Best part of personality:
Came to faith when/how:
Who most influenced character and when: