Character Depth

Depth COVER 300 dpiWriting Craft series, volume 3

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Character Depth
Keeping readers riveted with real characters, emotion & deep POV

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As of June 5, print copies are available through CreateSpace.

About the book

IS YOUR CHARACTER REAL TO YOUR READER?

CHARACTER DEPTH brings your character to life, making her real for your reader.

Does your character come to life, bounding off the page and into your readers’ hearts and minds? Or is he flatter than a paper pancake? A well-rounded character is more than a puppet to the whims of the plot. She moves her story forward through her actions and motivations. For a character to truly come to life for your readers, first she must come to life for you as the writer.

Even a well-rounded character can fall flat if we fail to convey her well. Deep point-of-view plays a vital role in showing our character’s depth to readers. Both well-rounded character development and effective writing are necessary to make our character truly come to life for readers.

CHARACTER DEPTH will help you:

  • Create a three-dimensional character from the ground up.
  • Dig into your character to find what makes him tick, and use that to make him come to life.
  • Discover your character’s vital backstory and convey it effectively.
  • Effectively portray your character’s emotions to keep your readers invested in her and her story.
  • Take advantage of deep point-of-view, the most popular POV mode.

Character depth is a fundamental feature of engaging fiction to keep your readers riveted to this book and eagerly anticipating your next.

Make your characters really come to life!

Advance praise

“McCollum teaches how to develop the character’s emotions and motives, how to line edit to clarify meaning and how to analyze each scene to keep the reader engaged. Plus so much more. Through detailed teaching, defining examples and questions that help the writer dig deeper, McCollum is the master of character development.”

Susan Dayley, author of Cold Pursuit and Hot Pursuit

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Product details

DCB logo on transparentPublisher: Durham Crest Books
Length: 120 pages
Publication date: June 5, 2015
Genre: Writing craft nonfiction
Formats: Kindle (.mobi), ePub, PDF, Trade paperback
ISBN (trade paperback): 978-1-940096-14-8 (paperback), 978-1-940096-15-5 (e-book)

Table of Contents

 

  • CHAPTER 1: Character Creation
    • Preplanning and flexibility
    • Coherent characters
    • Three dimensions of character: physical, social, psychological
    • Bringing our character to life using her core motivations
      • Quirks and opinions
      • Relationships
    • Creating complexity
      • Consistently inconsistent
      • Subtlety
  • CHAPTER 2: History Leading to Growth: Backstory
    • What to include and what to leave out
    • Character arcs: backstory leading to growth
    • Discovering & engineering your character’s backstory for maximum impact
  • CHAPTER 3: Deep Point-of-View
    • Getting to know your character from the inside out
    • First person, third person & italics
    • Making your character’s voice distinctive
      • What they notice
    • Deep POV mechanics
      • Show, don’t tell—for real
      • Use detail
  • CHAPTER 4: Effective Emotion
    • Creating character sympathy
    • Strength
    • Struggle
    • Sacrifice
      • Inner conflict
    • Show, don’t just tell, with emotions
    • Figurative language
    • Visceral emotion, visceral response
    • Emotional structure & flow
    • Emotional balance
      • Too little emotion
      • Too much emotion
      • Finding the balance
        • Set it up in advance
        • Make it clear in the scene, but don’t beat readers over the head
        • Use emotional imagery, setting or props
        • Know when to put it in, and when not to
        • Get feedback
  • CHAPTER 5: Plot Considerations for Character Depth
    • Difficult choices, deep characters
    • Character motivations
    • Strengthening the villain
      • Antagonists’ motivations
      • Increasing conflict
      • Maximum capacity
      • Climactic conflict
    • A life outside the story
      • Aspirations
      • What to take out
  • CHAPTER 6: Character Depth Examples
    • Harry Potter
      • Harry Potter himself
      • Ron Weasley
      • Hermione Granger
    • Scout, To Kill a Mockingbird
    • Elizabeth Bennet, Pride and Prejudice
    • Further examples
      • Books and authors
      • Characters
  • Concluding on Character Depth

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Bonus materials

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Also in the Writing Craft Series

craft title
characters title

Depth COVER 300 dpi
Character Arcs: Character Sympathy: Out now!
Character Depth:
Founding, forming and finishing your character’s internal journey Creating characters your readers have to root for Keeping readers riveted with real characters, emotion & deep POV

Buy now | About the book | Table of Contents
Advance praise | Product details
Bonus Material | More in the series

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