by Holly Riordan, Age 19
In order to write a believable story, it’s important to delve into the world you create. You need to be able to connect to each character and understand why they feel and act the way that they do. We all know that it can be difficult to get into the mindset of someone so different from yourself, especially if you want that character to be realistic.
The best tool an author can use to make a character realistic is his or her memory of painful events, no matter how small. If a character is in a traumatic situation you’ve never been through—such as a death of a loved one—you can draw on your own painful experiences. For example, if you’ve ever lost a pet or even flunked a quiz at school, you can use your memories of that pain. Increase the painful reaction you had until it turns into an appropriate response for your character. This will help your story be more realistic and believable.
Another tool authors can use to help make their stories more believable is music. If your story takes place during a storm, there are websites and CD’s that allow you to listen to the wind and rain. If you are writing about a couple, you can put on some love songs. Working on a fight scene? Try rap.
If you want readers to get lost in your fictional world, you have to get lost in it yourself while the work is still in progress. Memories and music will help you get lost in your own fictional world as you write.