Characters fill our stories, and many writing instructors or teachers will say that characters are what drive a story and what brings readers in.
Nondialogue voice or your character’s inner voice is usually done in a way that aligns with how the character speaks with the rest of the characters in the story. But sometimes an author wants to show that a character has extra depth or perhaps isn’t who they appear to be to the reader or other characters in the story.
Using character voice as exposition may seem like a simple technique, but more often than not, writers do this in a heavy-handed way. This leaves their dialogue stilted, dry, and an obvious story function that drains their prose. Blending story exposition and important story information allow you as the writer to keep your story engaging while feeding your reader what they need to know to stay grounded in your story and characters.
Once you’ve found your character’s voice, how do you deepen it to make it memorable and engaging? This is the second biggest hurdle a lot of writers face. They’ve found that cool voice and they’re like ‘Great! I’m done.’ But going the extra step to develop, deepen, and shape that voice around your story can create an even richer voice and engaging dialogue throughout your story.
While there are tons of ways of discovering your characters’ voices, the basic idea behind all of them comes down to one thing: figuring out how your characters speak in a variety of situations related to who they are, where they’re from, and who they are speaking to. Think about it. Do you talk the same to every one you speak to? What about characters in your favorite books? Do their voices stay static throughout the whole story?
When we’re writing our stories, we make deliberate decisions related to not just the big story event elements but the smaller aspects story like characterization. How do we want our readers to see or know our characters?
The interior world of characters or their interiority is an important part of characterization. It gives the reader insight into who the character is when no one but the author is looking.
How our characters move through our stories is just as important as who they are within our stories. In fact, a character’s actions and movements give the reader insight into who our characters are and so much more.
Power up your fiction by creating characters that are relatable, real, and complex.