Creating Meaningful Character Backstories

Creating a character can be pretty complex. There is a lot that can and often does go into it and sometimes you just don’t know where to start. You want a character who stands out and is memorable without becoming an improbable being who is boring to read. Your character has to be someone who not only you like but also your readers find interesting and want to know about. And that includes more than just your main character.

Of course if your main character is uninteresting, you probably won’t have too many people interested in finding out what happens to them, unless of course the whole point is to show case how they react to extraordinary situations outside their comfort zone.

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Orson Scott Card’s Hatrack River

Getting advise from an expert is always a positive. Orson Scott Card is well known in sci-fi communities and his website, Hatrack River, has a place for writers to come, look for advise, and give some of their own. The forum also has a place where you can sign up for a writers workshop hosted by Kathleen Dalton Woodbury, a published author of both sci-fi and fantasy works.

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Writing Prompt – Dead Friend

This prompt is a little different than my other ones in that while it did come out of my head, it is in regard to a story I’m planning to write and not one I have written or just a random thought. I have imagined this scene dozens of times, so I tried to make it as generic as I could for the prompt and still retain the general idea of it. I wanted to make an angst prompt, so here you go, hopefully this is angsty enough to count for that.

Writing Prompt

In this prompt you have two people. In the story I took this from one character is male and the other female, so I retained that for the prompt. After all, it’s my story, so why not. As you can probably guess from the comment about magic, it is a fantasy type story. The male character comes from a long line of people with magical powers while the female character comes from a family without any. She got a job at his family’s business shortly before he decided to change lines of work and work there as well, so they have gotten to know each other through that. Of course that’s not reflected in the prompt and you don’t have to include anything of it.

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Dialogue Prompt – Aggressively Ignore

I’m sure there are pieces of our lives that all of us would like to ignore. Of course most of us know that won’t work. Imagine, if you will, that you were to actively try to ignore something that was especially uncomfortable to you in hopes that it would just go away. You might have done just that at one point in your life, but what happened? Did it disappear? Probably not.

Writing Prompt

In this prompt by The Fake Redhead, that’s what the first speaker is trying to do. Of course the second person logically tries to tell them that won’t work, but do you think they will listen?

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Reddit for Writers

Reddit is a site where a lot of topics can and are discussed. It’s no surprise that they have their own communities for writers. There are at least two of them under the tags writing and write.

The site provides a forum for asking questions of other writers about all sorts of questions. For example if you want to ask somewhere where to find a good editor, there might be someone on reddit who can answer that question. Looking for a publisher who works with your genre of story? Asking on reddit might be the way to go.

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Writing Prompt – Humans Are Real

In this new prompt, I played with an idea that has popped into my head several times while watching anime mostly. There are some stories where non humans are rare to see or a human pulled to another world sees a demi-human or beastman for the first time. What about the reverse?

I’m sure there are stories out there and maybe you can give me dozens of examples. If you can, feel free to post about them, because I would be interested in checking them out. Let me know all about your favorites.

Writing Prompt

I cannot currently think of any and the idea is an interesting one, so I thought I would present it to you as an idea to potentially write. What if we were the myth? I don’t recall it exactly, but I have seen that done, but from the eyes of the humans who found the people who didn’t believe in there. So what about the demi-human or beastman who has never seen humans before. They have been told over and over that they are real. What if the story was from their point of view?

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National Novel Writing Month

The National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo as it is more commonly known. is best known as a challenge in the month of November to write 50,000 words in 30 days. That is a very limited view of what it is.

The website has a forum where thousands and thousands of writers communicate and aid each other in their writing journey. You can join a online community in your area and learn about write-ins where writers from your area come together and write together. There are places to ask questions on subjects you don’t understand or are having trouble researching. If you have a question about how to say something in another language, you can put it before the community and see if someone can help you out.

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Writing Prompt – Doll Prophecy

This prompt was fun to make and pretty much ridiculous. There are all sorts of stories centered around prophecies, so I thought I would make one of my own.

Writing Prompt

There isn’t much to it, but I think the right person could have a lot of fun with this prophecy. Maybe that right person is you. If you think it is, definitely have fun with it and let me know, because I’d love to see what you did with it.

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Writing Prompt – Mom’s Favorite

There are a lot of things you can potentially accomplish in life. Some of these are far more of interest to the general public than others. I think, however, that just because the general public is more interest in them does not make them more important to you.

What makes this writing prompt fun is that there are five siblings involved, four of whom are known to be accomplishing things that the general public would find amazing while the fifth siblings, the main character, is implied to not be doing anything so generally considered amazing and yet, it is entirely possible that the other four envy their middle sibling.

Writing Prompt

It leaves the potential gender of the character open as well as those of two of the siblings. One sibling, the oldest brother, and potentially oldest child, though if both girls the twins could be older, is a military genious. I wonder if he is good at stopping wars very quickly with the least amount of bloodshed possible.

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Writing Prompt – Writer Coma

In this new prompt we get the idea of writing about a writer, except in this case, the writer is probably not the point of view character. After all, the point of view character usually has to be conscious. Now it is entirely possible that they are, but it’s just as possible that they aren’t.

Writing Prompt

I think for this one you have two potential situations. One is that the whole story takes place within the writer’s head and the writer is the main character. Most likely in this case, the writer is the point of view character. The story likely consists of the characters in their head trying to convince the writer that everything they are seeing isn’t real and that the characters need the writer to wake up so that the writer can write about them. In this case, most likely all of the characters are technically a part of the writer’s subconscious trying to get them to wake up.

Then, there’s the other option.

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