Why character boards are a must in your writer’s toolbox

**Scroll to the bottom to get a sneak peek of my character aesthetics!**

As far as creative processes go, mine is definitely still developing. I haven’t been spending anywhere near enough time writing and creating recently, and I haven’t planned a novel in YEARS.

I guess after all the time that passed I forgot how hard it was. It takes a lot out of you, and you can spend yonks building a world, a setting, characters, conflict, and so on, for it to feel as though you haven’t really done anything. Because the hard work doesn’t start to show until the words manifest on your page.

But planning must come first, and this can go on for a very, very long time. And, lucky for us writers, the planning is hard. There’s so much to consider, and if you want your plot and characters to make sense then you can’t just skim over little pitfalls, because the reader will find them.

I’ve had the main protagonist in my mind for quite some time. For a while she didn’t have a name, and then she did. And then she had a last name. And then I started writing. But her motivation wasn’t clear and neither was her characterisation.

Truth be told, I tried to be lazy, and this wasn’t working. Having only just finished the second draft of my previous novel this year, I was still attached to my old main character. I didn’t want to let her, or the book go, and so I though “just recycle it then.”

Wrong. Very, very wrong. Do not do this.

I realised that I couldn’t go on with this technique. I was cheating myself, plagiarising my work and ultimately not being a very good writer. So I closed the door (for now) on my old book, and thought seriously about planning my new one.

My character is very different, a different species altogether, and I needed to get my head around this. So I started using Pinterest to create character boards, a technique I’ve never used before and I’m not sure why.

I’ve always known that I’m a visual writer, if I can see an image of something close to what I’m trying to describe then I find my work becomes a lot richer and believable.

Being so far detached from my two main characters, this was something I needed. And so I started putting images together, and slowly the strange misty images in my mind came together and looked more concrete. Now I feel like I know them, visually at least, and I can finally start taking some steps forward, planning the grit of the plot, refining characters, building the world.

Writing is hard, but planning is harder. Although it is still worth it.

Below is a small sliver of a clue as to what I’ve been working on the past month or so. It’s not perfect, but the building blocks are there, and it is so exciting!

CHARACTER 1

Screen Shot 2018-07-17 at 14.18.42.png

CHARACTER 2

Screen Shot 2018-07-16 at 15.18.37.png

Stay tuned for more updates and if you have any questions make sure to leave them below.

Laura Marie

Copyright: Laura Davis © 2018, all rights reserved.

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