Writers

Why You Should Know What Your Characters Want and Need

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     Constantly studying craft.

It’s vital that we, as storytellers, understand what ALL our characters (major and minor) want and need. If you have a cast of passionate characters, passionate about willy-nilly things, a story can get befuddling and difficult. Unless their passion circles the same topic the story wanders off in too many directions and then a reader gets lost.

For example, I recently read a manuscript wherein one character was passionate about rebuilding old cars, another passionate about remodeling kitchens, and a third passionate about going to day spas. Okay, interesting. Unfortunately these three passions never intersected in the story.  I suggested to the writer that if all three could meet as a result of vintage cars, remodeling, or at a day spa, then they could bond over that single shared passion, the crime could have something to do with that, and so on. But instead the reader was sent in three different directions, down three separate roads only to wonder why and then quickly get tired of the story.

Working on my next novel…

When I realized that the cast of characters in my upcoming novel, all of whom are holocaust survivors, all had the same needs (safety, community, nourishment, etc.) I had to write them with conflicting wants or the story would be boring (remember, wants and needs are VERY different) – some want to remember while others will do anything to forget. Some seek justice while others have lost hope in the jurisdiction of this world. Some seek the truth while others see only lies – and so on. These conflicting desires surrounding the same topic (the holocaust/concentration camp survival) create conflict no matter what else is happening. That tension filled topic is at the core of my story and keeps the spokes of my story-wheel spinning all in the same direction.

So remember, know the wants and needs of your characters and ALWAYS create conflict on every page.

Here’s a great article from K.M. Weiland on The Thing Your Character Wants VS The Thing Your Character Needs. 

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Featured Author at Boeing’s Future of Flight Aviation Center

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I’m very happy to announce that I will be the featured speaker at the Mukilteo Schools Foundation annual fundraising breakfast in November, held at the Future of Flight Aviation Center. I’m looking forward to helping them raise money to further the education of children in the Mukilteo area. http://www.mukilteoschoolsfoundation.org/events

Digital Autographs ~ Readers Connecting with Authors

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Are you an author who likes to autograph their books, or an avid reader who loves to collect autographs? Do you feel a disconnect when you purchase digital versions of your favorite author’s books, or as an author do you feel that same disconnect when you can’t offer autographs? Well, here’s the solution to your problem, AUTHORGRAPH.

I woke up this morning to another request for my autograph from a Kindle reader of my novel, Return To Sender. I love that! Thanks, Heather for reading and then taking time to connect with me.

Anyway, if you are a reader who wants to connect with your author via autographs, visit Authorgraph and sign up for this free service.  Authors, this FREE program allows you to offer your autograph to adoring fans.

What’s better than affordable marketing tools. Have fun.  Oh, and here’s what a digital autograph looks like … authorgraph