I hired my daughters as interns this summer. Although the positions are unpaid, the perks are enormous. Hugs. Gratitude. Time together. Video making. Exercising their creative brains. And as you’ll see when you watch the video they made, dairy-free dark-chocolate-chip brownies. I mean, what an amazing opportunity, right!? My daughter’s boyfriend is even going to help this summer as well!
My interns’ primary tasks center around marketing since they both have creative souls. My youngest even made this fabulous painting for me:
Yesterday, my daughters filmed the first in a series of “Where are Rosie and Charlie?” videos.
The video is AMAZING!
I’m so proud of them!
As I watched it, I realized my girls know my characters inside and out. The funny little tidbits they added about Rosie were SO … Rosie! It reinforced just how important it is to truly know your characters.
In that spirit, I thought I’d offer a few tools to help you get to know your characters as well as possible. After all, the better we know our characters, the more they will POP off the page and into our reader’s hearts.
Write notes, brainstorm, create a word bank and answer the following questions about your character(s):
—What will they do in different situations?
—How will they react (physically, emotionally, verbally)?
—What are their favorite expressions?
—What scares them?
—What is their home environment?
—Who are their friends and family?
—What is their culture, identity, background, religion?
—What is their history and/or past experiences?
—What quirks and qualms do they have?
—What are their hopes and wishes?
—What is their temperament?
—What are their traditions?
—What are their likes and dislikes?
—What are their favorite colors?
—What are their favorite foods?
Once you know all of these characteristics, you can put your character through a Character Situation Challenge. Let’s start with Rosie and Charlie:
As you can see, I knew exactly how Rosie and Charlie would react, and what they’d want. I can also imagine the mischief Rosie might cause.
Now it’s your turn to try the Character Situation Challenge:
How’d you do? Did you know exactly how your characters might react/act in the situations? Do you have more character development work to do?
As you develop your characters, and get to know them as well as possible, they will spring to life and exude the heart, resonance, and appeal your reader’s will love. In the words of Charlie, “You’ve got this!”
Now, without further ado, here’s the first in a series of “Where are Rosie and Charlie?” videos and pictures that will lead us to the launch of Rosie the Dragon and Charlie Say Good Night (Two Lions/Illustrated by Nate Wragg) on September 1, 2020. Good Night is the sequel to Rosie the Dragon and Charlie Make Waves. I can’t wait to share their next adventure with you!
(Don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel, follow my blog, and/or follow me on Twitter and Instagram (@LaurenKerstein) to see all of the “Where are Rosie and Charlie?” videos and pictures this summer.)
Feel. Write. Risk.