Friday, January 20, 2012

CHARACTER BUILDING

To write their story you will have to know your characters intimately. For this, you need to do more than fill out a character worksheet with all their physical characteristics, their birth sign, their place in the family hierarchy, the names of their siblings. — from Liz Fielding’s Little Book of Writing Romance

When most people talk about “character building” they mean doing hard stuff that builds your own character. Helping good causes, being a good neighbour, learning survival skills in a freezing tent on the Brecon Beacons.

When I talk about character building, I’m having fun.

Take Sorrel Amery, the heroine of the book I’m writing at the moment, for instance. I knew a bit about her before I started. She’s the younger sister of Elle Amery, the heroine of Tempted By Trouble. She’s been studying for a degree in Business Studies and is determined to be a millionaire by the time she’s twenty-five. With her big sister, Elle, on maternity leave from “Scoop!”, the business build around Rosie, a vintage ice cream van, she gets her chance. (It’s going to be a bumpy ride…)

I knew that she has dark red hair, is good with clothes and she does it on a budget, hunting through charity (goodwill) stores for classics. (One of my favourite authors, the late, and much missed, Anne Weale was a past master at this!)

I needed more and when I saw these shoes in a magazine I had found her weakness. She might go bargain hunting for silk shirts and classic suits, but she would live on bread and water for a month to possess this pair of Mui Mui sandals.

What is your heroine’s weakness?

What is your weakness? What would induce you give up your double skinny latte or your lunchtime trip to Pret a Manger?





5 comments:

Melissa Lockhart said...

love the shoes. I can see why her weakness is shoes.
My Nickie has a weakness for horses, dogs, art and old fashioned funiture.She would do anything to get to the stables every weekend.

Writer Pat Newcombe said...

Great shoes! And great characters too! Any character who values her shoes is fine in my book!

Liz Fielding said...

Aren't they just beautiful, Melissa!

Your Nickie has great weaknesses. I fear once the horse passion has bitten it's with you for life. :)

Liz Fielding said...

Hi Pat and welcome. I think we all suffer the same love of fabulous shoes.

I was on a visit to Leeds Castle with a group of romance authors and readers a while back and we all stopped at an open cupboard displaying beautiful embroidered shoes. :)

I couldn't wear those heels, but I'd love to have them in my wardrobe just to look at.

Lacey Devlin said...

Did someone say shoes? :-)

I haven't been able to wear heels since my ankle reconstruction but I'd like to have those in my wardrobe to look at too.

I love, love, love the sound of Sorrel Amery and I can't wait to read her story.