Character-Building Prompts

Very helpful, useful piece.

Myths of the Mirror

56637209b02bcb4238d18737d5bc83e0-d37416jAs a new series shapes up in my brain, character profiles dutifully tap across the laptop. In writing character bios, I’ve found that prompts expedite the process.

The prompt-list below has continued to evolve as I learn my craft. It looks more complicated than it is (a result of explanations and examples). In actual practice, I work off the list of headings with a few embedded questions.

For some prompts, a word or two is sufficient, while others require some contemplation. Unsurprisingly, I force my main characters to endure the entire process; incidental players get a pass with a mere smattering of detail, and everyone else falls somewhere in between.

Ultimately, I believe that this pre-work pays off, not only in character depth and overall story quality. To me, the process of writing flows with greater ease. My characters are immensely cooperative in telling their own stories when they know who…

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