On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Characters vs. People

I was thinking about a writer acquaintance of mine and what I've seen with her...on the surface. She is a writer, but I wouldn't judge her to be impassioned (my opinion). She's a stay at home Mom and I found her interactions with her husband and children to be stereotypical. And if I gauge it right, she may be having marital problems soon.

But all of that is on the outside looking in. My observations. I don't know her well enough to know her secret desires, or how she truly feels about her family. She will have depths that I don't know of.

Unlike characters. Characters need to be just complex enough to intrique the reader, but simple enough that the reader can understand them. Their motivations must be clear and believable.

Real people also have contradictions and inconsistencies, and, again, characters shouldn't because you usually don't have the pages to explain them. Or two conflicting motivations.

So characters really aren't people. They don't have the depth. They are more consistent, well-motivated, and believable. :)

May you enjoy people watching today.


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