13.21: Q&A on Character Depth and Motivation
Your Hosts: Brandon, Valynne, Dan, and Howard
Our listeners submitted some great questions!
- How do you fairly and even-handedly write a deeply compelling character you deeply dislike?
- What’s the best way to discuss a character’s underlying motivations without expressly stating them in narrative or dialog?
- How well should characters understand their own motivations?
- How do you make non-violent characters interesting?
- Can there be too much depth to a character?
- How do you balance character depth across multiple attributes?
- How do you make a character motivation seem deep when most people’s motivations are actually pretty shallow?
- Do you create standard dossiers for your characters?
- Does your story have to have a villain?
- How do you know whether or not a character’s voice is working?
- Do you track words or phrases that are unique to a particular character’s voice?
Liner Notes: Brandon mentioned Howard’s “Tyrannopotomus Rex” doodle as part of the writing prompt. Here it is, should you need visual reference.
Credits: This episode was recorded by Dan Thompson, and mastered by Alex Jackson.
Homework: Write a story about Howard’s “Tyrannopotumus Rex.” (Yes, it can be a story about how that’s not what a real tyrannopotomus rex looks like).
Thing of the week: Pitch Dark, by Courtney Alameda.
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