But there is definitely one thing magical about birthdays. No, it is not the new wrinkles, added pounds, or the wisdom of experience. Nope.
Two words: Chocolate Cake.
Those two words make up for all of the rest. You see, only on your birthday can you truly indulge in chocolate cake without a tinge of guilt from your inner health nut. For some of us, that nut is harder to find than others. But on your birthday, all guilt flies out the window.
Guiltless doesn’t equal lack of consequence. It should, but when I tried telling my scale that this morning it was duly unimpressed.
You see, stating the fact that it’s my birthday and I had a right to eat cake didn’t change the scale.
As writers sometimes we go through the action of telling our readers all about our characters, but it doesn’t change the story. We’ve devised all kinds of character interviews to help our readers connect with our characters, but sometimes it still falls flat.
How To Make The Character Interview Meaningful:
1. Ask The Right Questions. There are a variety of character interviews out there, but the one I have found the most helpful can be found at My Book Therapy or in the book Inside Out by Susan May Warren. It looks at the lie a character believes and builds their character journey out of it.
Over the life of a book heroes and heroines should change, this interview helps you build that into your story.
2. Dig Deeper. Many character interviews are on basic character traits or what the character loves. These types of character interviews can sometimes help you bring your character to life on the page, but if you don’t dig deeper they are just shallow details.
Ask yourself, Why does it matter? If your character likes chocolate, but there is no emotional tie to it you could bore your readers with too many of these types of details. A few are okay with out answering the why, but if it is important to your character you might want to ask why it matters.
3. Connect It To The Character’s Past. If a character loves baking because she did that with her grandmother every Christmas up until the day she died, then you can build in an emotional connection.
When your character is lonely or homesick, she could bake. The smell of baking soothes her, etc. You get the feeling. Certain smells, foods, or preferences have history that can be used to show emotion in your novel.
What do you like to read about a character? Or How do you make the character interview more meaningful?