Creating Characters: How to Build Story People by Dwight V. Swain

By Dwight V. Swain

A jargon-free handbook at the fundamentals of constructing attention-grabbing fictional characters.
Vibrant, plausible characters support force a fictional tale. in addition to a smart plot, well-drawn characters make us are looking to proceed interpreting a singular or end looking at a film. In growing Characters, Dwight V. Swain exhibits how writers can invent attention-grabbing characters and increase them in order that they circulation a narrative along.
“The center of character,” he says in bankruptcy 1, “lies in each one person tale person’s skill to care approximately whatever; to think implicitly or explicitly, that anything is important.” development on that foundation—the means to care—Swain takes the would-be author step by step throughout the basics of discovering and constructing “characters who flip you on.” This easy yet thought-provoking how-to is a invaluable instrument for either the amateur and the pro author.

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Additional info for Creating Characters: How to Build Story People

Sample text

At its heart, ever and always, writing remains—to a greater degree than we like to admit—a trial and error process. So as you work and study to acquire skill, never forget to pray a little too, for in the clinch we all need to have Lady Luck riding high upon our shoulders. It’s the custom in a book like this for the author to acknowledge the help he’s received from others along the way. For me, the list would be for too long to include here—the more so, since memory being as fallible as it is, some not included would be sure to have hurt feelings.

After a few years, that palled. I began to write fiction, and characters came to be an issue. Where did they come from? What shaped their fantasies, their foibles, their thinking? How did you motivate them believably? And so on. Well, finding them was no problem. My years as a reporter had taken care of that... Item: The aging, small-time storekeeper whose illegitimate son was a world-famous surgeon. Item: The allegedly happy, married man in his early thirties whom the police knew as a peeping Tom.

Meanwhile, the principle for simplistic labeling remains both sound and important. For ease of recognition it can’t be beat. Far too many writers create characters who are, at best, gray-neutral confusing, when it’s totally unnecessary. In life and in fiction alike, unfairly or not, we do identify people by labels aptly slapped on them by their fellows. That such labels may be wrong, of course, goes almost without saying. Externals are handy indeed, but they may distort or contradict what’s going on inside a pferson ...

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