Saturday, September 25, 2010

Ellen Hopkins - So What?

Ellen Hopkins writes great poetry. But when it comes down to it, it isn't the poetry that resonates and in some cases haunts readers. It's the characters.

She often reads for critiques and for blurbs and a common weakness she sees is character motivation.

Ellen says, "If you make the reader stop to ask WHY the character is doing whatever they are doing, then you've lost them!" She explains how to create and understand complex characters who do things that make sense.

Ellen explains that authors are often asked What Does the Character Want or Need? But the real question is WHY do they want it.

She takes the audience through exercises and asks questions to help writers pinpoint the motivations that define their characters.
Quote of the day- I'm always getting better! So, when I get to be 800, my writing might be perfect!

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