Writing a character description checklist

Since most people form their first impression of someone through visual clues, it makes sense to describe our characters using visual images. Because some characters read like cardboard.

Envision for them an incomplete arc. I developed this Character Stretch from a wide variety of sources, altered to fit my needs, with the sole intent of trying to improve my characters.

Creative writing checklist

Sometimes she put her hand over her mouth and laughed, her eyes closed and her shoulder shaking. The best and the worst of them all have qualities that we admire in people: When someone is generous, kind, energetic, or optimistic they exude energy that attracts others. When you describe how a character looksthink about how appearance illuminates personality.

As you describe real-life characters, zero in on distinguishing characteristics that reveal personality: She loved the sick lamb, the Sacred Heart pierced with sharp arrows, and poor Jesus falling beneath His cross. No identifying marks, no scars or tattoos, nothing to distinguish him.

A plot outline of some type including start hooks, inciting incidents, mid-points, an idea of the climax, and other tension points.

Keep in mind that an ideal beta would be in your target audience, but if they are a professional, they should be able to place themselves in those shoes and tell you at least a little bit about what you can expect from your target.

Make-up can also be worth noting on, since the decision to wear or not wear make-up has a lot to do with personal preference.

A great advantage of dialogue is that you can juxtapose what characters say to each other with their hidden, unspoken feelings. In conclusion, keep a journal of character descriptions copied from the novels you love. But for the beginning writer, sometimes a more concrete approach is helpful. They will catch the writer's speech tics.

These can all be changed. The setting helps the reader escape into the narrative. The writer skillfully uses a variety of LFR to create a compelling and stylistic artistic expression that adds to and heightens the story experience.

Sure, the characters run around and they do shit and say shit but none of it has anything to do with character and has everything to do with plot — as if the characters are just another mechanism to get to the next action sequence, the next plot point, the next frazza wazza wuzza buzza whatever.

Each major character should have their own voice, appearance, world view and set of motivations. And the stakes are high. Do they control their feelings or let loose with tears, hurtful words, or do they fly into a tirade.

A leather valise with a gold monogram on the handle. Who gets the lake cottage—the stepson or the daughter.

How to Write a Character Analysis How To

Character profiles are especially helpful for novels which involve several main characters and for stories which use multiple points of view. Old hats fell down over her eyes. Character profiles are useful when writing in any genre. He appears as a cardboard cutout rather than as a living, breathing character.

Once your character is situated comfortably, he may relax enough to reveal his secrets. Browse through the list below to choose what to focus on. Second because neither one of these things tells us much about their personality unless the hair is dyed, maybe.

How do they compare their life to others. Secrets It goes the other way, too. On the other hand, if your scary story does take place at the park on a hot and sunny summer day, it will be a very different kind of scary story—and that may be a good thing!. Answer the following questions for each of your main characters.

It’s usually most productive to take one character at a time, but if you run into difficulty answering the questions about one, try switching over to the other for a while.

Mark Flint, a freelance writer, once created a stir on WriterL, Jon Franklin’s literary-journalism listserv, with a checklist useful for character-building. It comes, Mark said, from the late Con Sellers, a prolific novelist from Grants Pass, Ore. Sellers apparently picked it up, in some form, from somebody else.

Character Descriptions. Bland descriptions are out. Go for memorable. Setting Details that Reveal Character. OK – what kind of junk does this character have it his/her house or apartment?

12 Creative Writing Templates for Planning Your Novel

Body Language. 55% of communication is body language. Get him or her moving to help communication. Characters’ Voices Voices can enhance our image of a character. Description: The writer uses description effectively and with purpose. The writer blends the description with action and character.

The writer blends the description with action and character. The writer avoids large chunks of purple prose.

May 26,  · Beta Reader Checklist Comments Thanks Dakota, an excellent list! I would like to add that as a professional editor and beta reader, I encourage writers to be specific about spots in the manuscript that they fell may be lacking.

Denise wrote: "But that's not avoiding a character description, that's having a character physical detail.

The Ultimate Character Checklist

Hi Steven, I agree, while writing the first draft, there's SO much to keep track of. Having notes/checklist/outline to look back at when editing is very helpful for me, especially because I like to set aside my manuscript for a while before coming back to it to edit.

Writing a character description checklist
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How to Create a Character Profile