These are some of the things C. Flynt has been up to, some of our personal lives, some reviews of things we've read, some stuff we've learned.

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<< May, 04, 2017 - Penguicon:Agents Apr, 08, 2017 - Rally of Writers: >>
Apr, 08, 2017 - Rally of Writers:Timmer and Spielman
The workshop on Character and Voice was done as two 1/2 hour sessions.

Julie Timmer led off with discussing characters and character arcs. She provided a worksheet like this:

Character Arc Worksheet

  1. In Chapter One my Main Character believes:___________________________________________________________________________________________________

  2. We know he believes this because we see/hear him _______________________________________________________________________________________________

  3. The reason he has this belief is ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  4. His belief changes because of these events:

    1. ________________ challenges his belief by ____________________________

    2. ________________ challenges his belief by ____________________________

    3. ________________ challenges his belief by ____________________________

    4. ________________ is so significant it changes his belief forever

  5. At the end, my Main Character believes _________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  6. We know he believes this because ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Lori Spielman discussed the Voice, or personality of your story.

If you're writing first person, the reader should be able to determine the gender, education level, personality, opinions and passions of your narrator by the way they present the story. If you have to tell the reader that the narrator is a 6' 2" ex-marine with short blond hair and a nick out of one ear, you've either failed to make it obvious, or you're Richard Prather.

This includes word choices as well as phrasing. Joe Jock's description of shopping will have action words like "I charged the front line of the jewelry department", while Mike Militia might "scout the unfamiliar territory of lingerie", and Tracie Teenager would "dance up to the parts counter as if I knew what a brake pad was."

Her suggestions for finding voice include

  1. Examine your natural voice - not the one you use when writing term papers.
  2. Identify your reader. Speak to them, not to some generic ideal.
  3. Study your writing analytically. Experiment. Figure out what PoV or style suits you best. Spielman ended up writing first person-present tense for her best works.
  4. Inlcude feelings, passions, honesty, opinions and humor. This makes the narrator/PoV real, rather than just being a faceless reporter.