Character Development

by Charlotte Horton

Question: My story is fairly simple, Sun and Moon Guardians (which are the souls of the Sun and Moon) are on Earth because the Darkness the Sun had 'fought off' millions years ago 'wants revenge' so he is causing death and destruction to the planet (he is actually just getting the Sun's attention because she forgot about the deal). Naturally there are some hiccups along the way for the protagonists when searching for the darkness. The Moon is carefree and reckless and always prefers doing the fun thing rather than the right thing, whilst the Sun is a bit more responsible, but isn't as brave as she lets on. The two characters clash a lot, which causes about half of the hiccups because of them having different ideas to reach the goal - destroying the Darkness.

I was wondering how to go about doing a character development, like what sort of things could start the change of a character.

Answer: It sounds like you already have the beginning of a character arc.

Think about what kind of person the Sun is at the start of the story. What is her usual way of dealing with problems? Is it sticking to the rules? Controlling her impulses? Can you show her in action -- give the reader an event that demonstrates how she handles challenges?

Then think about how that approach will be tested and challenged in the course of the story.

It sounds like the Moon is the impact character who may offer the Sun an example of a different approach -- a reason to doubt herself. Perhaps have some events that show the Moon handling challenges. Let the Sun see that the Moon's approach of acting on impulse rather than following the rules may work better in some situations. You could have the Sun experiment with taking the Moon's approach, perhaps with mixed results.

At the crisis, the Sun will have to make a crucial decision whether to stick with her old approach or take a leap of faith and follow the Moon's example.

Best of luck.

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