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Writing Tips for Fiction Writers!


Character Creation

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Character Creation
This section is devoted to articles about creating characters into real, believable people, and the methods used to achieve this.

Scroll down for a list of articles on Naming Characters, Creating Villains Bringing Characters To Life and Creating Non-Human Characters

Naming Characters & Dialogue

What's in a Name?
by Cynthia VanRooy
Naming your characters can be a difficult process for some writers and close to impossible for others. Cynthia looks at ways to select your character names.

Writing Dazzling Dialogue
by Lee Masterson
Putting a realistic, believable conversation into your story is not as simple as it seems. Dialogue can be one of a writer's most important tools.

What's in a Name?
by Scott Nicholson
Names do matter, and one of the quickest ways that fiction spoils itself is by having an unbelievable character.

Creating Villains

The Other in Fiction: Creating Wonderfully Wicked Villains
(this link will take you to Horror Factor)
by Carolyn Kaufman, PsyD
Characters with psychological problems and quirks have appeared as long as people have told stories. So how do you write these quirks into your tale believably?

Creating Villains People Love to Hate
by Lee Masterson
Why create a strong hero for your story unless you are willing to give him a worthy villain to beat?

by Vicki Hinze
Don't cheat your protagonist by giving him or her a weak opponent. Create a truly worthy antagonist or villain for your story.

Creating Characters

Casting Your Characters
by Lee Masterson
When beginning a novel, the tendency of most writers is to create a Protagonist to suit the plot or story they have imagined and then dive into the fun stuff of writing the book. But many authors forget the need for a strong supporting 'cast' - the players around the Protagonist that bring a book to life.

Creating Memorable Characters
by Lee Masterson
Anyone can create a character, but it takes hard work to turn that character into a memorable hero that will leave your readers craving for more.

Creating Unforgettable Characters
by Dr. Vicki Hinze
Story people emulate real people, though they are actually just the creative genius of the writer who develops them. Creating something or someone from nothing and convincing others the creation is real IS creative genius. And writers do this by incorporating little strokes.

Creating Memorable Characters (Physical vs. imagination)
by Cheryl Wright
Learning to describe a character without giving a long, boring narrative description can be a challenging task. Cheryl looks at ways to give information about character without resorting to descriptions.

Creating a Character for a Horror Story (this link will take you to Horror Factor)
by Sarah Todd
The most important part of fiction is the characters you create to tell your story. A good horror story character is a fictional being every bit as alive and as much a unique individual as anyone with whom we are acquainted.

Seven Common Character Types
By Terry W. Ervin II
A fuller understanding of the character types and their uses can increase a writer’s effectiveness in weaving his own fictional tales.

A Cast of Thousands
by Tina Morgan
Is your story populated with enough people to fill a small city? Or have you only introduced enough important characters to propel your story?

Mysterious Liaisons: Creating Characters Through Life
by Cheryl Wright
Cheryl takes a look at ways to develop fictional characters from real-life people you meet everyday!

All Characters Are 3 Dimensional, Right?
by Tina Morgan
Secondary characters can sometimes be crucial to the development of a major character, but they don't have to be cardboard cut-outs.

The Mystery of Character
by Robert Wilson
The second most asked question by any writer is: How do you think up your characters?

Bringing Characters to Life

Trust Your Readers
by Lee Masterson
Are you giving your readers enough credit for supplying their own details based on your descriptions? Or don't you trust them to complete the picture for themselves?

Make 'Em Perfect - Give 'Em Flaws
by Cheryl Wright
Nobody's perfect, so why do writers want to make perfect characters? People empathize more readily with a strong protagonist with realistic flaws. Cheryl looks at ways you can create the perfectly flawed characters.

Build Your Own Platypus
or How to Create Unique Characters

by Tina Morgan
Creating unique, complex, three-dimensional characters is much easier than you think!

Developing Realistic Characters
by Tina Morgan
Once you've created you characters, how do you develop them to a point where they are as real as you are?

Developing Character Traits
by Tina Morgan
What makes your character act the way she does? And are those reactions realistic? Take a look at some ways to add depth to your characters

Physical Character Traits
by Tina Morgan
Why does your character look the way he does? And are his physical attributes believable enough to be integral to your story?

Using Body Language to Create Believable Characters
by Lisa Hood
55% of our communication is through body language. Lisa looks at ways to bring depth and realism to your characters by using body language

Character Traits: Mannerisms
by Tina Morgan
Mannerisms are those unique little gestures and movements we make that set us apart from those around us. What are your characters doing?

Adding Character Depth Through Perception
by Lee Masterson
Every person on the planet sees life through their own personal perceptions. These differing perceptions are what make us unique as human beings - but are you using your characters' perceptions to highlight their own individuality?

Picking the Right Viewpoint Character
by Tina Morgan
Choosing the right person to tell your story is almost important as the story itself.

It's My Novel
by Tina Morgan
The character that came, stayed, refused to leave and tried to take over. And how that's not such a bad thing.

Building Realism Through Characters
by Leslie Esdaile Banks
Creating realism in a work of fiction is easy - once your characters are fleshed out into living, breathing beings!

Direct vs. Indirect Characterization
by Terry W. Ervin II
As a writer, you have the choice of describing your characters in two ways - directly or indirectly. Which way will you choose?

Characters and Viewpoint (This link will take you to Children's Fiction Factor)
by Laura Backes
Telling your story from the right point of view can be crucial to your story.

Gazing into the Looking Glass - Bringing Your Character to Life
by Tina Morgan
Most author struggle with and - and when - to describe their characters. Tina looks at how the pros do it.

Create Vivid, Memorable Characters - Breathe Life into Your Fictional People
By Lucia Zimmitti
If your readers don't care about your characters, you're sunk. Readers don't necessarily have to like all of your characters, but they have to care about what happens to your main character, or there's no reason for them to keep reading.

Creating Non-Human Characters

Aliens and Faeries: Non-Human Characters Acting Badly
by Lee Masterson
A quick guide on making your non-human characters more than just humans in bad masks.

Creating Believable Aliens
by Tina Morgan
No longer can a science fiction writer create a goo-dripping alien just because a story line requires an adversary from another planet to drop in on our unsuspecting world.

Creating New Alien Species
by Lee Masterson

Creating a whole new alien species for your science fiction story can be as simple as asking the right questions about environment


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