This is the continued saga of my foray into Janice Hardy’s Revise Your Novel in 31 Days at-home workshop (blog.janicehardy.com).
Today’s focus is on fleshing out my characters. Are they believable, likable or compelling, and if not, what might be missing? If there is a character I’m not satisfied with, there are eight questions listed to help figure out why. They address things like flaws, virtues, contradicting beliefs, backstory, and approach to problem-solving.
I feel pretty comfortable with my characters at this point, so I did a quick scan of the eight questions to see if I could answer them all satisfactorily. It was also suggested, if I was satisfied with my characters, that I work on some of my previous notes. I used this time to check several revisions off my list, including clarifying the stakes in chapters 5 and 12.
Results: Going through the eight questions provided and answering them for my protagonist, antagonist, and two other main characters, I felt a stronger understanding and bond with them. Hopefully, my readers will too.
Making your characters three-dimensional makes them real to your readers. This exercise may be difficult, but you will be surprised how much it enhances your characters. It will enrich your story in a satisfying and empowering way. The difference is like eating a rich stew compared to a thin broth. Your readers will feel sated.
See you on the next page.