Hello! Thanks for joining me on the MuseItYoung and MustItYA blog! My name is Erin Albert, and my epic high fantasy novel, The Prophecy, debuts in November of this year! I am thrilled!
Photo by Kim Sharphotography
Since I don’t have an awesome cover to show you (will be in the works soon) or a book jacket and excerpt to offer (keeping those cards close to the chest for a teensy bit longer), I’d like to talk about creating characters. As a writer (and really for my regular life too), I like to fly by the seat of my pants. I have a beginning and end in mind for my stories, but sometimes the middle takes me for a ride even I didn’t anticipate.
How, in that situation, do I create consistent, believable characters? I start with their physical characteristics because that’s the easiest. How does this person look? After I establish their outer attributes (which can sometimes affect their inner attributes), I work on their habits, quirks, strengths, and weakness. Let me tell you, I love quirks. J It’s crucial to include weaknesses in a character. No one wants to read about a practically perfect person. We all know those people we think are perfect…and we generally don’t like them. J
For an example, let’s pretend I’m a character. Here is how I would start working out a description…
Name: Erin Albert
Physical features: Brown hair (dyes blond in the summer and dark brown with red in the winter), bright blue eyes, 5’2” tall, _____ weight (yeah right-haha), tiny chickenpox scar on left cheek, large scar on left knee from childhood injury.
Habits and Quirks:
1) OCD (literally checks the locked doors three times at night—it HAS to be three times)
2) Major hand washer (not because of germs but because she doesn’t like the feel of a “film” on her hands)
3) Never leaves the house without makeup on (thanks, Grandma for that hang up)
4) Family and friends say she’s a member of the “Grammar Police,” but she can’t spell
5) Crazy, lifelong crush on Val Kilmer
6) Loves running and kickboxing
7) Played a recurring character in a play for 4 years, took her 3 years after the last play to donate her costumes
1) Lively and energetic
2) Health conscious
3) Tries to do the right things
4) Tries to be kind and thoughtful
1) Procrastinator (you know, Procrastinators Unite…tomorrow)
2) OCD when it interferes with regular life
3) Can “check out” and live in her own little world
4) Easily distractible
You’re probably thinking, but you’re a real person! Exactly! You want your character to be so realistic that he/she seems like a real person. These “people” should be someone with whom you could be friends, fall in love, hate, envy, and—most importantly—relate.
Who is your favorite book character? What makes him/her so likeable?
I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Thank you so much for joining me on MuseItYoung and MuseItYA today!! I hope you’ve enjoyed my blog post, and I really hope you’ll give The Prophecy a read in November! J
Since you hung around and read my whole post, I’ll give you a “sneak peak” of my tagline to say thanks!
“One often finds destiny on the road taken to avoid it.”
You can find me online at www.erinalbertbooks.com, Erin Albert Books (on FB), and @ErinAlbertBooks (Twitter). Subscribe to my blog, like me on FB, and follow me on Twitter if you’d be so kind!
Until next time,