Our first Group Blog of the New Year and it’s a great one. How do you develop secondary characters? Do you even have a favorite secondary character?
I thought I’d start with the definition. The secondary character is more than just a minor character and is responsible for progressing the story in some way. He or she is necessary to the story because this character reveals key details, motivates the protagonist, foils the protagonist, or helps define the story’s setting. The secondary character almost always interacts with the protagonist on some level, be it through dialogue or a memory that the protagonist has of this secondary character. They help us show, not tell.
I develop mine much like I do my main characters but with less detail. I decide who needs a friend or someone to talk to, someone who helps move the story forward. Then I do a little back story, a description, some personality traits and some good and bad points. I may not write about any of it, but it helps get the feel of the secondary character. As with the main characters, I get to know them better as the story progresses, but as secondary characters I write them a little looser and can have fun with them. I was once warned not to like them too much, or they could take over the story.
Hmm, a favorite secondary character… I love Gran in my Hawkins’ Ranch series. She’s the matriarch of the family and a busy body, who moves a lot of the stories forward, especially the romance part. And Betty, who owns the Diner which is gossip center, and she knows everything and loves the townspeople. And from the Foundation, The Fourth Victim, there’s Link Stone, (for entirely different reasons) the security officer and Carly’s semi-bodyguard, but he’s being elevated in the next book. I’m looking forward to reading what other authors have to say. Please join me by checking them out.
Skye Taylor http://www.skye-writer.com/blogging_by_the_sea
Margaret Fieland http://margaretfieland.wordpress.com
Helena Fairfax http://www.helenafairfax.com/blog
Dr. Bob Rich https://wp.me/p3Xihq-1tC
Fiona McGier http://www.fionamcgier.com/
Connie Vines http://mizging.blogspot.com/
Judith Copek http://lynx-sis.blogspot.com/
Victoria Chatham http://www.victoriachatham.com
Rhobin L Courtright http://www.rhobincourtright.com/