Welcome to our stop (THE FIRST STOP) on Angela Carling's SHACKLED blog tour!
Today we bring you a guest post by Angela herself, plus a chance to win a signed copy of Shackled or an ebook copy.
Now over to Angela Carling :-)
Hi there! My name is Angela Carling and I am the author of Unbreakable Love and Shackled. First I want to say thank you to Damaris for letting me stop over and post a guest blog. I’ve worked with her on both my blog tours and she is the coolest!
Today, she invited me to write about how to create relatable characters. I know entire books by far more talented people than me have been written on this subject, so I’m not going to go for the I know everything approach, because frankly I don’t. However, I have learned a few things on my publishing journey. I picked four to talk about today.
1. Your characters must be authentic to their environment. For four years, I studied nature vs. nurture as a psychology major and I am convinced that we come as a genetic package and then are profoundly affected by our environment. For example, someone raised with money and privilege will see the world very differently then someone raised in the ghetto. Characters need to fit into their environment in order to be believable or relatable.
2. Your character should have consistent quirks and qualities all the way through your story line. Giving a character flaws does two things, it makes them accessible and human and simultaneously it gives them something to overcome. Even superman had kryptonite. Let’s say you create a nail biter, along with that she’s probably a nervous personality. Take that and run with it all the way through. Chances are, some nervous nail biting reader will relate to her and how she deals with stress. I know I would☺
3. Finally, the character you create does not live in the world alone and so he or she must fit into the puzzle of characters around him or her. Think about the characters in The Hunger Games, how in the arena, Katniss’s character shows such contrast to say, those contestants who have been training all their life and are fighting for the win rather than for survival or Rue and her vulnerability vs. Katniss and her hunter instincts. When their personalities coexist and contrast, they take on new luster and depth.
The point is people don’t live in a bubble and neither should your characters.
4. All this being said, no character will relate to everyone. That’s not the goal. The goal is to make them real and relatable to as many people as we can. We all experience the same raw emotions, love, hate, loss, anger, disappointment. It is these emotions that endear us to the characters we read about and make them relatable even if we have nothing obvious in common with them. Use emotion powerfully and it will connect your readers to your characters, like hand to glove. Thanks for your time today and I hope that a character I’ve created in one of my books will make you laugh or maybe cry but most of all that you will know you are not alone in this big world!!!
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After shy, quiet Lucy and her family move from their small hometown in Minnesota to Seattle, Washington, she is surprised when Ryan, the most popular boy at school asks her out. Soon, she is swept up in a whirlwind romance and her naïve and trusting nature allows her to fall head over heels in love with her too-good-to-be suitor. Suddenly, Lucy finds herself enraptured by the excitement of her new relationship, leaving her blinded to the warning signs of danger ahead. Can her fairy tale romance last, or will she find that her prince charming is more like a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
SHACKLED BOOK TRAILER:
Leave a meaningful comment below and make sure to leave a way for us to contact you if you win! :-)
This giveaway will be open international, however if you win and live in the United States you have your choice of ebook or signed paperback. If you live outside the USA you will automatically win the ebook copy.
**Giveaway ends June 24th and winner will be announced on June 25th.