Places characters come from are the people you know, memories and strangers who step into our paths and we weave it all through creative flow to form interesting fictional characters. The life you lead, places explored and your unique experiences stirred together are the mixture for memorable characters. They are the places characters live and wait to be discovered.
Let's take a closer look.
People You Know
Places characters come from appears in the person who brings laughter to everyone, even in times of sadness. He/she finds a thread of humor to slice away some of the tension in the room. Or, the person who can piece together a dinner or impromptu gathering with what is already in the kitchen. How about the individual who recalls people, places and preferences with only a bit of information. A character in one of my mysteries, for example, has an arthritic knee. She limps and have been seen rubbing it. I noticed it in a family member. The condition took hold of the body, and had a toll on simple activities that others take for granted.
- Many writers take traits and qualities from friends or family.
- You know their strengths and weaknesses.
- The key is to pluck away enough information for a starting point.
- Work with the flaw or trait that stands out.
- The person who is called a character by family is a good choice.
- How about the person who is first to volunteer, no matter what.
Memories are the happy and sad accounts of your life. A life lived captures too many moments to remember. There are ways to let memories live when some have been forgotten. A picture, video or journal will bring back memories lost due to time.
- Memories provide for many possible writing ideas.
- It's an endless source for creating characters.
- Recall the picture of a lady that no one knows?
- The video of a get-together when everyone wore green.
- A pet's pose.
- Journal entry about the creepy (fill in the blank) ____________?
Begin by selecting an incident, time, from memory. An incident from your first job is worth exploring. Select from an odd incident at the store, mall or at home. Focus on the stranger's behavior. The mentioned paths lends itself to creating characters.
- The stranger that gave you an ice-cold stare can twist down paths.
- The character could be a stalker.
- A character is paid to scare someone? Who?
- It started at 12 midnight.
- The wind hollered at the same time each night.
- Day quickly melted into night when the door shook.
A writer peeling away exact traits and qualities stands a chance of hurting feelings. The possibility of facing a law-suit detailing the theft of another writer's work taps you on the back when your creative flow strays. Therefore, characters should be the "stuff" of a writer's creative flow. Allow your style to awaken and shine. Finally, fictional characters come from various places, and sprinkling in people you know, memory or strangers you've seen can create exciting fiction.