Friday, March 23, 2012
Writing: Character Development
Although we aren't addicted to most of the "popular" programs on TV, Kay and I do have our favorites. Most are sitcoms (because, face it, there's already enough drama in the world), but we also like a few that feature some tension. One of these is The Closer. The show's star, Kyra Sedgwick, does a great job, and we're sorry to see she's leaving after this coming season.
The show is on hiatus right now, but when we watched one of the last episodes to air, I commented, "They're really changing Captain Rader's character, making her more likeable. Guess they're getting ready for her to assume the lead role soon." That's character development.
Writers seek to make one or more of their characters change as the story progresses. That's character development. The character may change slowly, as circumstances impact them, or may experience a dramatic turn-around due to a situation or development (think Saul on the road to Damascus). In either case, change has occurred. Without this, things can get boring in a hurry.
As I've done the edits on my forthcoming book, I had to make tweaks and changes in the story of a couple of the main players so that their character development was smooth. It's not as easy as it sounds, but the end result is certainly worthwhile.
Have you been struck by the character development in a book, movie, or play? Would you share an example with me and my readers? Can't wait to hear from you.