Saturday, May 25, 2013

Deep Connections by Rebecca Graf Tour - Guest Post "Character Building"

Character Building 

In building your character within your story, you have to know your character. You have to be able to enter his/her mind and know what drives them, haunts them, and pleases them. You have to become the character. 

I might write a scene, but when I go back I realize that the character would never have said what I had written. I have to stop and think, “Now this is an old woman who has some spunk. How would she think? How would she respond to that one person?” I have to become her. One of the best ways to do this and get to know a character is to people watch. Yes, people watching is not just for old folks. Writers can use it to get wonderful characters. 

I have sat at family functions and watched how people of various ages interact. If I’m writing a story about a teenager, I’m focused on the teens and how they act and talk. If I’m writing a story about a  middle-aged woman who just lost her husband, I find someone in that situation. 

Watch people on the bus, at church, in the family, at the doctor’s office, at a ballgame, and even at weddings and funerals. Be very observant and take mental notes. You’ll find your best character building simply by watching people. You’ll know how they will react and what words will come out of their mouth.  

One of my characters is a story that has not been published yet is loved by many of my beta readers. The character is based on several people I know very well. I’ve used their mannerisms and phrases to create a unique character. Use people you know. Use people you are familiar with. 

Do you have drama in your life? I know I do, and most doesn’t even involve me. I know you want to strangle the people and run from them, but use them for your character building. Take their reactions and put them with one of your characters. Take their drama that you once ran from and use it as research material. 

Character building comes from knowing your character and understanding how they will react. Use the people around you. Might as well get something out of all the drama.


Just as love appears, so does the darkness. With her heart reaching out for one man, Brenna finds herself the target of an unknown stalker. Who is he? What does he want? How far will he go for her? Death is an option. Brenna discovers more than she bargained for and learns that the stalker will kill for her. It all comes down to decisions, and no matter what she chooses it will demand sacrifice and someone's blood.

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The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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