Posts Tagged ‘dramatic question’

Inner demons

You know that your major character is going to make or break your novel, so you’ve studied up. You’ve got a list of strengths and weaknesses, some defining quirks and maybe a back story to add credibility. Set to go, right?

No. Because so far the characteristics aren’t related to the story. Great characters aren’t built up from features, they are crafted with an eye to dramatic functions.

If you’re writing a story with even a smidgen of inner story (characterization) then you need to understand the role of weakness in character–otherwise known as  inner demons. These demons may be fear, ignorance, immaturity, crippling ambition, or any other negative impulse that places your major character at a disadvantage in doing what must be done. If  your hero is perfect on page one, he’s got nowhere to go (or grow) except to solve the plot problem. Read More…