Your story starts here.

The Refinery Catalogue

Science Fiction and Fantasy: Creating a Character, Profiling Your People

Science Fiction and Fantasy: Creating a Character, Profiling Your People


1. What is character-building? What does backstory lend to a story? We can’t attempt to be better character creators without knowing why we do it. This week we’ll examine what readers love in characters, and what it achieves when done well.

2. What does a hero or a villain look like? How much showing vs telling, and how are both done right? Using award-winning and fun-to-read examples, we’ll do an in-depth examination of what works. We’ll also look at some of the most notorious examples of

what it looks like when character descriptions fail.

3. Research is your friend! Let’s get into the blindspots many writers have about their own creations: What do these people in this universe do for money? What is their language like, and how does this shape their culture? Can you base an alien race on

an ancient Earth tribe? Of course, you can! Research is the answer. This week you can build on part one of this class, taking your universe research to inform your

character or research from scratch.

4. How to play to your strengths. Students will share their areas of knowledge and expertise, and we’ll discuss how we can work these details into a rich, authentic-feeling

characters. Inane details, what they like and don't like, a life timeline, education, skills, etc...Create a dossier for your main characters and your minor characters. Create a

casting call.

5. Outline or pantsing? Plan your story by the method that makes most sense to you, letting your world take the wheel. This week will involve a lot of 1 on 1 attention to your project. Let’s plan that short story and get it written!

6. Being a writer. This week you are writing (hopefully finishing!) your short story or chapter. What does that mean? How can you be a kind and productive member of this community? Let’s talk about the wild and fabulous world you’re becoming a part of, and share some advice about survival, support, and sweet success. 

Instructor: Danelle Lejuene 

Tuesdays, April 9-May 14, 2019, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Add To Cart