There are a lot of questionnaires and sketch activities out there to help you develop your characters, but I recently discovered a shorter technique that helps me nail down my characters’ interests and personalities – the bio poem.
Bio poems are not long (11 lines), but they cover some of the most important things you need to know about your characters, and they always follow the same format.
Here is an example of my bio poem for my main character of my current WIP.
Intelligent, Curious, Kind, Perceptive
Sister of Annette, Daughter of Henry and Paulina
Lover of books, learning, and adventure
Who feels love, curiosity, and fear
Who needs to find real friends, the truth, and the strength to face it
Who gives kindness, friendship, and help
Who fears the unknown, Crothingham’s spooky hallways, and Dusten
Who wants Will to still be living, her family to be safe and provided for, and to be free of Bludington
Resident of Prosera
I’ve also included a template you can use for your own characters: here.
How about you? What techniques do you use to develop your characters? Let me know in the comments!
On an unrelated note, I’m about to start Writing Down the Bones. Who has read it and what did you think?
This post is part of the #authortoolboxbloghop hosted by Raimey Gallant. To find out more or join in the fun, go here.