WRITE LA Creative Fiction Workshop 2020
Updates and assignments will continue to be posted. Please check back on alternating Wednesdays.
Now that you’ve entered your hero’s characteristics—the things that make them unique and special—this next assignment is about the world they live in.
Imagine what your character looks like based on all of the questions you answered in the previous assignment. Let’s bring them to life!
I asked about your favorites because those things will help you understand the characters you find yourself drawn to, and will make your creations very real to you.
The key to writing great characters and a fun story is that YOU, the story creator, believe in the characters themselves. Your hero represents you. What you love, what you wish for, what you’re afraid of, what you admire, and how you see the world.
There is not perfect or wrong way to accomplish that so … now lets start with the first paragraph. I’m going to start by making up my own intro as an example.
Once upon a time, in a world that was losing its way, a young girl named Echo sat on the floor of her bedroom. Surrounded by clothes messily strewn everywhere and One Direction posters plastered across her bright green walls music blaring through the earphones, she hears a loud sound like glass breaking. Startled, she takes her earphones out and waits to see if she can hear it again. SMASH! CRASH! SHATTER!
She stands up, dusting off her Cheetos stained fingers on her jeans.
“What was that?” she wonders. “And where did it come from?”
She scans the room to see if anything looks broken. Nothing. But then she hears something else. It’s a strange noise, and sounds like a toy is being scooted across the worn wooden floors. Her bright hazel eyes widen.
“Where is it coming from?”
She looks all around as the sound gets louder and louder. Suddenly she notices an old toy horse on her bookshelf is about to fall off the ledge. Without warning, the horse falls. She rubs her eyes, and walks over to pick it up and as she bends down she notices a broken piece of another horse now laying on the same part of the floor. She kneels down to grab it and suddenly she feels a chill in the air.
The window is slightly open and a soft breeze is blowing. As she walks to close the window just outside on the large overgrown oak tree is a boy wearing a teal cape staring back at her. She lets out a scream and slams the window closed, running to a corner hoping he didn’t see her…
(©written by Dawn Garcia)
By starting with describing the “who” and then painting a picture of “where” she is, in addition to mentioning a few extra details, the reader now gets a sense that Echo might be in trouble. Those little cues called “tell tales” allow you to picture a setting, a personality, and what her surroundings are.
The sudden appearance of the boy creates both curiosity and fear. Is he just a boy? Is he a superhero? Is it her best friend just playing? All of those things are valid questions and depending on where you are taking your story, only you can answer them.
Refer to the answers you’ve put together from Assignment No. 1. Email me questions if you have any email@example.com