Sunday, December 19, 2010

Character Building

Over the past few weeks I've been discussing character
development. Janet Evanovich is known for her
characters so, once again, I turned to her book
How I Write. (Also written by Ina Yalof)

Their advice includes:

1. The main character must want something.
2. Someone or something (nature, money, distance)
must stand in the way of his getting what he wants.
3. The choices a character makes in his efforts to
overcome obstacles and ultimately get what he wants
define the character.

If you remember nothing else about writing, remember that
advice. If the heroine in your romance gets her
man on page two and everything is wonderful
you don't have a compelling story.

Save the wonderful life for the end of the story,
but make sure she has obstacles to overcome
to earn that ending.

I like to think of it as a roller coaster;
the reader wants the ride. She wants her
pulse to race as she takes the journey
with the heroine. She knows there is a happy
ending waiting for them, but she doesn't know
which obstacles the heroine will encounter on
this particular ride.

The bigger the obstacle, the better the story.
I know when I write my heroine into a corner and have no
idea how I am going to get her out of that mess, I have done my
job well. Don't worry, in a day or two, the answer will come
and my heroine gets her happy ending. I'm sure it
will be the same for you as well.

Until next week,
Happy Writing!
Tina LaVon

1 comment:

Kim Watters said...

Very timely advice, Tina, as I wrestle with rewriting my proposal. Thanks for another wonderful post. Merry Christmas.