Monday, March 5, 2012

Part 4 - Character Traits, Duchess and March Plans

Readers want character they can identify or sympathize with and who demonstrate multiple dimensions and emotions.   As a reader of historical fiction, I am interested in clothing, foods, customs and other period related items.

Sandy Tritt’s article “Character Trait Chart and Personality Components”   asks several questions for writers to consider when creating a character. Three of the traits she listed; smell, health and walking style, immediately made me think of things I have read about Henry VIII.  The leg wound he sustained in his prime would plague him for the rest of his life.  Not only did it hamper his walking style but his vanity was deeply injured as he had once been an admired dancer and athlete.  Because the wound would not heal properly, it required frequent dressing and the odor was quite unpleasant.  The chart of traits that accompanies this article is quite extensive and should prove helpful during those times when the right word just won’t materialize in a writer’s memory.

Another source I frequently turn to is “The Bookshelf Muse”.  They offer a thesaurus of not only character traits, but settings, symbolism, colors, and shapes among many other informative descriptive articles for writers.

I finished "Duchess: A Novel of Sarah Churchill" by Susan Holloway Scott this evening. The descriptions here were quite interesting and at times, slightly racy. She did lightly touch upon subjects that were realistic but she handled them quite well. In this book we walk along Sarah as she rises from poverty and through the ranks of the court of Charles II. The costs of friendships and intrigues are also explored. The characters came alive and invoked sorrow and sometimes disdain as I read this. 

I got behind with the February series and still have one more post left: Goal, Motivation and Conflict. I seem to be coming upon a lot of information in my craft reading regarding GMC, and would like to explore it here. 

March ushers in my first full roller derby season, some surprise guest posts, and a short series on Plotting. Old movie buffs will enjoy planned posts on deconstructing two rarely shown movies.  My goal is to grow this blog into an interesting place for writers and others. 

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