Elements of Fiction Writing - Characters & Viewpoint: Proven by Orson Scott Card

By Orson Scott Card

Vivid and noteworthy characters aren't born: they need to be made

This publication is a collection of instruments: literary crowbars, chisels, mallets, pliers and tongs. Use them to pry, chip, yank and sift solid characters out of where the place they dwell on your imagination.

Award-winning writer Orson Scott Card explains extensive the suggestions of inventing, constructing and providing characters, plus dealing with perspective in novels and brief tales. With particular examples, he spells out your narrative options—the offerings you will make in growing fictional humans so "real" that readers will suppose they be aware of them like individuals in their personal families.

You'll find out how to:

  • Draw characters from various sources
  • Make characters convey who they're via the issues they do and say, and by means of their person "style"
  • Develop characters readers will love—or like to hate
  • Distinguish between significant characters, minor characters and walk-ons, and boost every one appropriately
  • Choose the simplest standpoint to bare the characters and circulation the storytelling
  • Decide how deeply you want to discover your characters' recommendations, feelings, and attitudes

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Extra info for Elements of Fiction Writing - Characters & Viewpoint: Proven advice and timeless techniques for creating compelling characters by an award-winning author

Example text

There’s no mystical process involved. All you have to do is turn your mind into a net for ideas, always casting out into the waters of life and literature, and gathering in the ideas that are there waiting to be noticed. Because, you see, ideas are cheap. They’re around you all the time. You can’t get through a day without running into hundreds, even thousands of ideas for characters or stories. Not me, you say? Yes, you, says me. If you don’t notice these ideas, it’s because you aren’t paying attention.

When you’re writing along, or outlining a story, or simply interrogating an idea that just came to you, chances are very good that when you ask one of these why and what result questions, the first answer that pops into your mind will be a cliche. It’s as if, without even looking up, you reach onto that cliche shelf and pull down the first thing that comes to hand. And if you aren’t paying attention, you’ll settle for it, and your story will be weaker and shallower because you made do with a cheap and easy answer and didn’t keep asking questions until you came up with something really good.

They tell you to try doing all the stuff you’ve already tried. They tell you to call all the people you already tried to call. Then what? — Woooooooo! — Ambulance! Okay, you called an ambulance. It pulls up, siren going, lights flashing. What happens? — The baby stops crying. — The parents come home! Wonderful! The baby stops crying and the parents come home. They see an ambulance at their house, they come inside — The baby’s sleeping. — Like a baby! What do you do? — Tell them what happened. — They won’t believe you.

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