This post is part of a series of posts I’m doing during the month of November for NaNoWriMo. Each day I’m adding a new resource for writers to my Writer’s Toolbox. Check back daily for the next tool in the toolbox!
So let’s say you have your book idea and you’re getting to a point where you’re ready to start writing. For me at least, ideas can pop into my head but they need some time to stew before I’m ready to put pen to paper–or fingers to keyboard. A lot of things can help me get to that point where I’m finally ready to write. There are ways I can force my mind to stew over a story idea. That’s what outlining and drawing and reading is for–among other things. One of the tools I created for myself is my Character Creation Worksheet.
Why it Belongs in the Toolbox
Taking the time to flesh out your characters can be invaluable. Even though you may have some scenes or characteristics already worked out in your head, it can be invaluable to your character development to ask some basic questions about each of your major players before you start writing. I know that I learn things about my characters in the process of writing, but just like you don’t go out on a date with a stranger, you need to know a little bit about your character before you sit down at the restaurant.
I’ve seen all sorts of approaches at character sheets, and even though I think it’s important to adapt any template to your own uses, I took the time to create my own character sheet some time ago. It’s been on the website for a month or two and is a popular download on the site. If you don’t have a character sheet you already use, I invite you to use this one. Feel free to download it, print it, adapt it to your own use–I don’t even care if you post it to your own website or forum to share it with your friends. Hope it helps