~~I know I keep talking about the September Exercises at the Book and Writers Forum with awe, but it's deserved. There are thirty questions to answer about a character. It might look simple, but it's a deceptive simplicity that hides a wealth of discovery. Try it. That's all I can say. Try it if you're stuck on the motives behind some of your characters' actions. Try it if you find yourself blocked on what comes next. Just try it.
~~During September I did the exercise with Paul Collins, the main character of a short story I'm working on. I thought I knew what made the man tick. I had no clue. My story is infinitely richer now.
~~Now I'm using with questions with the main character of my WIP. I've been writing Laura Grace Chandler's POV since March 2008. You'd think I knew her voice inside and out by now. Not. I'm only to question 6 and she's opening in ways I couldn't have imagined. Here's a snip.
Who is the most important person in your character's life right now?
The most important person in my life was Samantha. Not two months ago, I'd have said it was Tom. Even though he is dead. I knew what that meant. I'd chosen to live not to mourn. It had been a subtle choice, one I hadn't consciously made. But I'd made it. Just as sure as the sun rose each day or the seasons shifted. Now I was connected to the girl, even though I'd only seen her twice and talked to her once. We had sung together. Warmth flooded my chest. Yes. That was when I'd made the choice. During Amazing Grace. Once I was blind to the opportunities my life held, and now I saw. Oh, yes. Now I could see.
~~Do you have cherished methods to get into the heart of your characters?