Sunday, July 4, 2010

How to make your one freebie work for you

Yesterday, I posted about the idea of "one freebie". Once you figure out what your one freebie is, how can you make it work for you?

For example, my one freebie is world building. Why am I good at it? I like the research, I like the brain storming, I like making fantastical things seem realistic.

Now, I'm afraid that character voice is one of my weaker areas. So, how can I use the things that work for me in world building in creating character voice?

Research my characters. What kind of backgrounds do they have? Educational level? Personal traumas or quirks? Myers Briggs type?

Brainstorm about my characters. Fast talkers, slow talkers, use of slang, etc. Oubliette, for example, comes from a different era and has a background from a faeish culture that doesn't exist any more. She's incredibly angry at humans. She feels alone in her outrage about what humans have done to faeish and wants to win faeish (specifically Troll Wife) over to her side of the fight. So, she would sound archaic. She would use faeish (rather than human) idioms. She would speak compellingly.

Make the fantastical sound realistic. Who was someone that is famous for speaking compellingly? Winston Churchill. How did he do it? He wrote his speeches, and then in his final edits he rewrote them into blank verse. So, maybe Oubliette would speak in blank verse.

Oh. My. Gosh. Now I need to research blank verse. But at least I have a handle on how to take my strengths and use them to deal with my weaknesses.


  1. Plotting is a good one to have, because you can use that skill set for so many other aspects of writing. You can plot dialogue and plot characters. When you've got story, dialogue and characters, you've got a novel! :)


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