How to Develop Realistic Characters

A Writer's Path


Today, I thought it would be fun to talk about what makes a fictional character believable. It’s easy to describe what a character looks like and give her/him/it a cool name. But how do you make your readers care about what happens to that character? What’s the secret to bringing your characters to life?

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Indie (?) Author Interview: Hugh Howey

I loved the Wool Trilogy. I was lucky enough to find it when all three paper backs were available. Then I just ripped through the lot of them.

The Phil Factor

Hi Hugh and welcome to #ThePhilFactor. Thanks for taking the time to share some thoughts with my readers. First off, I just want everyone to know that the question mark above is not questioning if you are an author, but if you are an indie author. The answer may be both. For those of my readers who are not familiar with Hugh’s work by name, you’ve no doubt seen the cover of the Omnibus Edition of his New York Times and USA Today bestselling Wool series in bookstores. Hugh has also penned the award winning Molly Fyde series.  Hugh initially published his work independently through Kindle Direct Publishing as many of us do and now he has a contract with Simon & Schuster but retains his electronic publishing rights.


TPF: Hugh, you’re living the dream every self-publishing indie writer has of having a story find its audience and really take…

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Why Writers are Nuts

All writers are crazy. You have to be. Whether that’s good crazy or just batshit crazy is often debatable. Take the following into account: you’re told that most of your work will take place in solitude – you’ll need  solitude – and you will need to create everything like the great god that everyone fancies they are. Then, after the effort of creation, you might not make a dime. In fact, you might have no readers at all. After the first failure, you try again. Rinse and repeat. So, you might ask. Why waste time with this often thankless task. Answer? Craziness. Lots of it, please. As bad as it can  get, here’s my top five reasons you might want to try writing for a living:

5. It is extremely therapeutic – as mentioned above, writers are crazy and they need an outlet. One that only ends in the brutal murder if a charater (one who I’m sure had it coming).

4. It’s a great hobby and everyone needs a pastime  (preferrably one that doesn’t get in the way of Candy Crush or some other soul crushing addiction fun game).

3. It allows you to get out of your own self. You play the role of all your charaters inside your head. Controlled multiple personality disorder. When you’ve been at it for enough hours, you won’t even notice that you’re talking to yourself. Out loud. In the local cafe. Wonder why people back slowly away?

2. When everything is going well and the words are flowing, it’s fun. More than that, it’s exhilarating. You think, why can’t I do this all the time. Then you quit your day job, stop getting ideas, go broke, huddle in the corner of a box and get eaten by a bear. You scream “This is metro Australia! We have no bears!” Your dying thought is ……. We don’t know. You’re dead!

1. The most popular reason writers write is  – dum, du, du, da – because WRITERS WRITE. They must or they become the worst possible versions of humans the world has yet to see. Writers who squash that need wither inside, very sad creations. So go ahead, you don’t have to explain your reasons to anyone.