Character Development

Strong characters are the single most important part of any story. To watch all of our videos on creating great characters, use the embedded playlist. To find a specific character development topic, use the list below or the search bar.

A Quick Tip for Fleshing Out Your Characters

Kellie Sheridan shares one of her tips for creating well-rounded characters.

Balancing Backstory

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk all things backstory–when to use it, how much to use, prologues, and more!

Becky Albertalli: Connecting With Characters

Becky Albertalli–award winning author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda–talks about connecting with your characters.

Building Characters: Introductions

Emma Gisclair talks about how to create strong characters in this two-part series. Part 1: Introductions Part 2: Choices

Caitlyn Laster: The Basics of Writing Blind Characters

Writer Caitlyn Laster (also known by her pen name Cheyenne Raphael!) shares her advice for anyone trying to write blind or visually impaired characters.

Caroline Leech: Writing Accents

Caroline Leech–YA author of WAIT FOR ME (HarperTeen, Jan 2017)–talks about how to write characters who speak with accents.

CHARACTER CREATION

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk all about how to make new, well-rounded characters.

Character Intros that Inspire

Erica Crouch talks about how Maggie Stiefvater introduces readers to her characters in The Raven Boys, and how we can learn from that and apply it to our own writing.

Crafting Strong Characters Using Tests Like the MBTI

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds discuss how using the Myers Briggs test (and other tests like it) can help you get to know your characters better and make them more realistic to your readers.

Creating Strong Character Arcs

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk about how to make sure your character has a strong arc throughout the course of your story.

Does Your Villain Match Your Protagonist?

Meghan Jashinsky talks about villains that she’s tired of seeing, and the types of villains she’d be much more interested in reading about.

Ellie Moreton: Character Chemistry and Acidity

Author Ellie Moreton guest vlogs about character chemistry –specifically characters with acidic relationships–based off of things she learned watching Breaking Bad!

Families in Young Adult Lit

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk about the role of family members in YA books and how to write good family members.

Getting to Know New Characters

Emma Gisclair talks about how she gets to know new characters using her writing notebooks and the Myers Briggs test.

How to Focus on Features

Rachel Sargeant talks about how to build strong characterization by delving deeper than the basic hair/eye color features of a character.

Killing Your Characters

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk all about character deaths and how to write them well.

Likeable and Relatable Characters

Emma Gisclair talks about what it means to have a likeable or relatable character and how you can make your characters these things.

Maintaining a Large Cast of Characters

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk about books that have large casts of characters, and how you can write a stellar cast of characters in your novels.

Multiple POVs

Emma Gisclair talks all about points of view. How many should who have? Who should they belong to?

Orphan Black and Characterization

Emma Gisclair is inspired to create complex, diverse characters, and talks about how you can do it too.

Parents in YA

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds discuss the role that parents currently play in Young Adult lit, as well as the role they’d like to see parents play in the future.

PROBLEM CHARACTERS BE LIKE

Meghan Jashinsky gets into a fight with one of her problem characters.

The DOs and DON’Ts of Character Death

Erica Crouch talks about which character deaths are meaningful and which ones fall flat.

Three Questions to Ask Your Character

E. Latimer provides three questions that you can ask to get inspired to write awesome characters.

VILLAINS

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk about villains of all kinds and how you can write a deliciously evil villain that readers will love to hate.

Writing Contradictions

Rachel Sargeant talks about how to make your characters three-dimensional by writing contradictions.

Writing Real Life Characters

E. Latimer talks about putting real people into your fiction. Should you?

Writing Realistic Characters

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk about how to write a three-dimensional character.

Writing Realistic Female Characters

In this Sunday Special live chat, the WordNerds talk about writing strong female characters of all types.

Writing Realistic Male Characters

In this Sunday special live chat, the WordNerds talk about how to write realistic male characters and the role gender plays in developing your character.

Writing Realistic Villains

E. Latimer talks about how to make an antagonist that will terrify your readers because they’re so realistic.