Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Characters - another perspective

Vanessa Grant looks at her characters in a different way to McKee. Her Hero/Heroine should have one major motivation driving the story, that she calls the Prime Motivating Force. She believes it should colour their every thought and affect their every move. The PMF should stem from a dramatic event in the character’s past. She recommends a character checklist: Do the characters fit the story spark? Are they alive? Do you care about them? What do they want? Why can’t they have it? Should they have it? What happens when goal meets obstacle? What then? What doesn’t work about the whole thing? When it doesn’t work, throw out the character, spark or setting and begin again!

Look closely at the top picture and I think you'll agree that the deer is perfectly camoflaged against the winter foliage. Had it not been for its white rump, I wouldn't have spotted it. We stared at one another for about a minute, and then dog-walkers appeared from the opposite direction, the deer gracefully turned tail, leapt the fence into the woods and disappeared.

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