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Character is my #1 draw in any story. Books pose a unique experience in the world of media that no other form offers so well: we actually get to occupy other people. Book stories are as much about who the reader is as it is about who the protagonist is. We contrast our own reactions and choices to the ones our protagonists make. We put ourselves in the relationships our protagonists form. Character is the scaffolding all other elements of story are organized around. No other media experience allows us to explore character as deeply, nor is it quite as essential as it is in a book.

Books as a story form rely heavily, almost singularly on the written word. We have a title and cover that, well chosen, ignites our imagination for the words it protects but at its source is merely a starting point. It acts as the gate for the road, the road we journey on as we read the words that carry us forward. An argument can be made that storytelling through books relies upon the strength of our writing craft. Yet there are many popular books that won’t win any writing awards, in fact, many authorities were surprised enough words were strung together to format the story properly… Why then did the book work for readers?

Books are about balance. We learn about writing vs. story craft. Dialogue vs. action. Premise vs. plot. Character vs. abilities. Strong combinations of character, plot and premise can overcome writing simplicity. Whereas extreme complexity in writing can bog down a world to the point only academics can penetrate it. It’s your choices as a writer and what you find important that will dictate the balance in your work. As you study books, finding this balance will strengthen your craft, both writing and story wise.

Need a place to start? Click one of my top book posts!

5-Star Etched in Bone

Strays is 5-Star

Gardenia, 5-Star Mystery

SeQuence: The Heart of the Ocean, Book 1

I’ll Hug You More Flip-Sided Book

Reflecting The Glass Republic

The Good in Selected

5-Star The Edge of Everything

5-Star Love and First Sight

4-Star, The Outs

Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill

5-Star Mad Miss Mimic

Dangerous Starwalkers

Rise of the Flame…Burns

Can You Find My Robot’s Arm? by Chihiro Takeuchi

Prelude to Mayhem by Edward Aubry

Wade’s Wiggly Antlers with my nephew

The Fearless Travelers’ Guide to Wicked Places

The Dollhouse Waste

A Mortal Song Struggle

Gilded Cage POVs

Immortal Writers Premise

Perfect 100 Ghost Soup

Perfect No Virgin

Rise of the Chosen Randomness

Home is Where You Are… Details

Remnants Dual POV Battle

The Deadbringer End

Firebolt: Worlds of Potential

Passengers of All Races

Engaging Holding Smoke

The Dream Protocol Rescue Mission

The “Confused” Story Traveler

It’s All Fun and Games Until Arrows Fly

Eyes Stare in Black Fairy Tale

And I Darken in the Ottoman Empire

Do You Feel Like Talking About How You Feel?

Newbery Honor Book…Not for my Child!

When Rooting for the Villain is Better than Good

Mantis, Mosquito, and Moth…Oh My?

A Bloated Secret Gift

Adaptions and The Book Thief

The Source of Ender’s Game

Top Ten Reasons I Love Blogging & Reading

Story’s Love Affair w/Sex or Talk of Censorship

5 Rules When Writing Paranormal Powers

The Voice of a Tevoda Angel…

Top Ten Characters I’d Never Trade Places With

fan·girl*

Top Ten Things on My Reading Wishlist

A Flaw in Fae Plot — 3 Important Rules

October Daye’s Fae, Fae World

An Experienced Book Club’s 8 Rules

Writing Diagnostic: Caleb’s Crossing

A Time of Thanksgiving: Books

Caleb’s Crossing to Nowhereland

The Eye, Heart and Mind of The Hunger Games

Wonderland Under the Looking Glass

I Wanna be Popular too: A Series

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