Writing: Character—Which Comes First, The Arc or the Backstory?


This is such an interesting and informative article from Amanda Bennett, I just had to share it!

Amanda Down the Rabbit Hole

In deciding to write a novel, I have taken on the monumental task of creating characters. Of course, when I first made this decision, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Whooo-Boy!

In previous posts I discussed creating personalities and senses of humor for characters, and that was hard enough, but it turns out that writing a compelling story is about more than a collection of interesting personalities interacting with each other. In my latest journey down the rabbit hole, I discovered that what makes a story truly engaging is having at least one character (usually the protagonist) undergo an internal change—known as the character arc.

In fact, according to many writing advice bloggers, YouTubers and authors, the internal arc is the whole point.

But in order to necessitate a change, there must be a reason why the character needs to change, which means there must be…

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Published by EJ Jackson

I write, therefore I am! Love film, theatre,TV and books: science-fiction, thrillers/crime and mystery. Geek, wife and mum, sister. Created the official Appreciation Society for 'The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy', www.zzz9.org Author of 'The Methuselah Paradox' and new comic book series 'Minding Mama' (illustrated by Dan Schaefer). www.mindingmama.org Author of 'The Journey & Other Short Stories' (August 2014) , 'The Methuselah Paradox' (August 2016) , 'New Leaf' (2017) , 'Minding Mama & Other Short Stories (Feb 2019) and 'Minding Mama' a post-apocalyptic adventure (tbc). Lots more in the pipeline! "Imagination is the highest kite one can fly." - Lauren Bacall

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