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Understand the Characters

In order to create characters that readers really connect with, you need to understand all aspects of the character. Where the character has come from (life experiences so far) and where the character is going, likes & dislikes, fears & struggles. Remember, the story is the main character's journey. He/she is going to change and grow as a person as he/she moves towards achieving his/her goal. Challenge your characters; easy is boring. 

Character Cards are good ways to keep track of all this information. 

1. Create your very own SUPERHERO: what is his/her name? Does he/she have a secret identity (like Superman & Clark Kent)? Has he/she always had superpowers? Who knows about the superpowers? Does he/she like having superpowers? Draw a picture of what your superhero looks like.

2. Choose 2 characters from your favourite books or movies. Create a CHARACTER CARD for each character (Use the CHARACTER CARD DOWNLOAD).

3. Choose a character you used in #2. What would this character do in the following situations:

  • Finds a wallet on the ground. Would the character a) do nothing leave it there, b) pick up the wallet and try to return it to the owner, c)​ take money from the wallet then turn it into the police, d) take money from the wallet and leave it where he found it

  • What would the character do if a close friend asked him to lie for her (coverup something bad that she was doing?)

  • If an authority figure asked him to do something he wasn't comfortable with doing?

  • The choice of going to a large party or staying in for a quiet night at home.

  • Create a scene using one of the above scenarios. Write out this scene in detail as if it appeared in the book or movie that the character is from. You can use supporting characters from the book or movie in your scene as well, if you wish. 

4. Describe what the bedroom of one of your favourite characters from a book/TV show/movie would look like.