Goal setting/Update

» Posted on Jun 29, 2006 in Blog | Comments Off on Goal setting/Update

I wanted to share with you all that A Mother for Cindy was a finalists in the inspirational category in the Texas Gold Contest. Also, I wanted to let you all know that I will be gone for a week. I am so looking forward to lying on a beach, doing nothing but reading a good book. I would appreciate your prayers for a safe trip.

I don’t know about you, but the summer is flying by. Tomorrow is the last day of June and I still have so much I want to get done before school starts. Yikes!

Now for my writing tip: When you are writing a story, one of the essential components of it will be the characters’ goals–what drives them. I want to emphasize the importance of building a character’s background and back story in order to develop his/her goal(s). This not only works for goal development but also for motivation and conflict development.

When you’re developing your characters for your story, so much of it will evolve from what you come up with concerning your characters’ background (or back story). You need to live with your characters until you think they are your new best friends. The better you know them, the easier it is to write them. I find some protagonists are easier to write than others. Some speak to me better than others.

No matter how much I think I know my characters when I start writing, I am always surprised when I actually get into putting the story down on paper. They throw me curves in every book because as you write their story, you become even better acquainted with your protagonists. That’s okay. Occasionally you need to be careful an pull them in, but most of the time listen to them as they tell you what they are like and what they need (goal).

On my website under the article page there is a characterization article and sheet you can use to help you develop your protagonist in depth. A lot of this needs to be done before you start the story, but fine tuning will take place as you write. A word of caution here: please don’t try to put all the back story up front in your book. Sprinkle it throughout your story. And please feel free to use my characterization sheet if it will help you.

A person’s goal will evolve from their background so take the time to develop an in depth one with many layers to it. When you do, coming up with a goal is a natural extension of your characterization. Example: In my latest book Laura had been married to a controlling man. He wanted her dependent on him and over time she became that way (this is all back story). When he died, she never wanted to feel that way again. Her goal was to become independent and not to depend on anyone else but herself. This is where the story begins.