Fridays with Freddie - Character Inspiration

Welcome back folks! As promised I'm back again with a new Fridays with Freddie post. Today I decided to follow along the same vein as last week, when I talked about being organized. I mentioned how often I get ideas I can't use just then. Jumping off from that, I'd like to tackle these questions:

Where do your characters come from? Do you draw on real life? Do you create character profiles?

Let's get into it!

I'm coming up with character ideas all the times, and sometimes that's the only piece of a future story I have. A face, a name, or a personality type. So where does that come from? Most of my characters come from my head, but are influenced lightly (or sometimes strongly) be real life people. Character A may hold opinions or likes similar to Real Person A, but then have a personality more similar to Real Person B, but may resemble Real Life Person C. I almost always have a Real Life face in mind when creating characters. Sometimes the face comes first, sometimes the character does and then I look for a face that suits.

Okay I don't do that, but I couldn't pass up this gif.

A lot of times - and you'll see plenty of inspirational faces if you go the the inspiration tag on my Tumblr - I create a character solely based off an image I saw that I loved and wanted to incorporate. Either way, nine times out of ten, I flesh out that character with a detailed character profile. The longer the story, the more likely I am to have a more detailed profile. I have to know the characters I'm writing, what drives them, how they function, etc. so that I don't get stumped during the story wondering what they would do. It helps immensely.

As for what I use to create those character profiles, well that depends. Sometimes a short bio that include appearance, personality, traits, and drives; sometimes i dig down deep and create  a full-on stat sheet. Again the longer and more involved the story, the more involved the character creation.

That's not to say I know my short story characters less well. I just don't have to delve as deep because for the story needed. However, if I revisit them, then chances are I dig a little deeper for more motivation.
Mama Odie always got me singin'!

What about you? How do you create characters? Do you use specific programs or follow a general outline? How deep do you dig into a character back story? Tell me in the comments below!



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