Use your book journal as writing inspiration

Length: 10 minutes
Use your book journal as writing inspiration

Writing session | Use your book journal as writing inspiration

Prep | Choose ten books you have read. From either of these ten books, pick three memorable characters.

It could be Scarlett O’Hara, Harry Potter, and Sherlock Holmes as an example.

Write | Seat the characters you choose at the same table at a dinner party. Now write a scene where they interact with each other.

Don’t worry about the quality of the piece just have fun writing about some beloved or hated characters from books you have read. It could also be that you learn something new about a character from a book you disliked when reading it.

You might ask yourself why to go through the trouble of this exercise. First of all, I think it is fun, but this exercise also makes me think of craft. I get to ponder how the respective authors went about creating those memorable characters. What first comes to mind when I think of the example above is the looks and temper of Scarlett. Harry Potter has his scar but it is his family story and courage which stays with me as a reader. And Sherlock Holmes has such good dialogue.

What do you focus most on when writing a character? Could you use your book journal as writing inspiration for creating characters?

Extra | when you go through your list of books and characters, notice what they have in common. Is it a specific theme or a special kind of personality trait? Now write for ten minutes and incorporate this theme or trait without mentioning the word itself. For example, show a character being courageous but without using the word courage.

I ask the same two questions in the quiz after each writing session. Namely, did you write? And did you feel the joy of writing? As writers, we want to say, yes I did write today.

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