A WRITING EXERCISE – INTERVIEW YOUR CHARACTER…

One of the best ways I know of either developing a fictional character, or of creating a completely new one, is through questions. It’s amazing what comes up, and how surprising many of the answers can be if you just let yourself go. They really do shape the story. You can do it on your own, or with someone else, but really imagine yourself into your character, even answering the questions with ‘I’.

CHARACTER QUESTIONNAIRE

‘Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself;
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)
Walt Whitman, Song of Myself

What does your character look like, how old, how tall, how fat or thin?

How would they like to look?

How do they dress?

What is their favourite meal?

How often do they get to eat it, and why or why not?

Do they like cities or the countryside? Hot countries or cold?

Describe the view from their bedroom window.

Write their childhood memory.

What is their favourite book?

What are they frightened of?

What do they think about love?

What is the one sentence they would never say?

Do they have any physical habits, gestures, etc?

How would they most like to spend Sundays?

What object would they save if their house was on fire?

Who would they tell a secret to?

Do they have any hobbies, passions, interests?

What makes them angry?

What do they want?

Finally, finish this sentence in your character’s voice: I have never told anyone this before but….

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