2 Surprising Strategies for Character Development: Character-Based and Plot-Driven Video Download

2 Surprising Strategies for Character Development: Character-Based and Plot-Driven Video Download

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We writers have a natural inclination either to draw story from characters (character-based) or draw characters from story and ideas (plot-driven). As a result, Character Development manifests as either the primary starting place (character-based) or the secondary consideration (plot-driven). What does this mean in practical terms? Writers of mystery, suspense, horror, romance, etc. build characters to come to life in the arc of the story that ignites the writer and allows for the rules of that specific genre. Writers of literary, mainstream, etc. find that a character comes to life and the story comes from the character. The rules of the genre, the path of the arc, can seem more forgiving--but aren't. All of us writers must let characters come to life, breathe, and take on that portion of existence within the story.

This tutorial looks at the different strategies that allow characters to develop appropriately for character-based and plot-driven fiction. Considerations are sometimes surprising and inspiring: Plot-driven needs backstory development, character-based needs now-in-the-moment, while both need lots and lots of attitude and "feet-on-the-ground" freedom.

So which kind of writer are you? Plot-driven or character-based? Who are your role models and which kind of writer are they?

In this 83-minute tutorial video, you’ll discover:

  • How to know what type of writer you are: Plot-driven or Character-based
  • Backstory: How to get the most out of it without driving readers crazy
  • Where does the story begin, on the page and in your head
  • Playing with 1st and Close Third Points of View
  • Reliability vs. Unreliability of the Main Character
  • Character Chemistry on the Page
  • Liking Your Character Enough or Too Much

Knowing how to develop your characters for either a character-based or plot-driven story means that your characters will either be or realize the story effectively. If you're writing a mystery, your character will move the plot forward without getting in the way. If you're writing a mainstream novel, your character will give you a story. Either way, readers will believe your characters--and be compelled to turn pages. Now that's what we all want, right?