Okay, so the planning stages for the book are coming to a close. I just have one more central character to do a profile for, and then I should pretty much be good to go!
This stage of the planning is something I really wanted to make sure I paid close attention to, because the way I like to tell stories (especially with fiction) is through character-driven narratives. I wanted to make sure the way I brought them to life was individual to each of them, so that throughout the book, I would know what exactly each of them would do in any situation.
I also wanted to share where I found these character profiles, in case anyone was interested! This template is one that I’ve used in the past, and I continue to use it today because it really helps me think deeply about what each of my characters will be like. When you look at the template, you may think “wow, this is excessive, do I really need to know this much about my character?” My answer to that would be an emphatic “yes,” but honestly, you do you.
I think it’s important to have an intimate knowledge with your characters (especially the most central ones) because it helps you figure out where you want to take their development. Having that deep knowledge of who they are can really help with knowing what decisions they will make, what other characters they may get along with, and how their choices and actions can influence the trajectory of the overall plot. Because the characters are so integral in moving the plot along, knowing exactly how they would do that is extremely helpful to know before the writing process begins.
Of course, that’s not to say that things about them can’t change, or that you won’t still get stumped about what they will do in a situation! However, at least having some sort of framework for who they are can really get you started on how they move through the story.
I find it to be one of my favorite parts about planning for novels, actually, and that’s definitely influenced by the fact that a lot of my story ideas tend to be very character-driven. I like figuring out what kinds of quirks all of my characters are going to have, and starting to brainstorm how each of the characters’ relationships will pan out. Sometimes I even surprise myself while conceptualizing the character, discovering a neat way they can throw the whole story off balance (but in the best way). You always have to have at least one of those characters that keeps the reader on edge.
Now if only these templates made it easy to come up with character names. THAT would make it even more ideal.
As a quick side note, if you’re interested in seeing all the characters I’ve created so far, becoming a supporter of my Patreon will get you access to all of the character profiles I’ve made so far, as well as any other behind-the-scenes info that goes into the process of writing this book! And once I get started on the drafting process, I will be regularly posting excerpts from the book, giving you them good-good sneak peeks of what’s going on in the book (I’ll try to pick excerpts that aren’t TOO heavy on spoilers).
Thanks for reading, y’all! I’m super excited about this novel, so I absolutely cannot WAIT to start writing it!