Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Checklists for Novels - Part 3 of 3 - Scenes, Dialogue, Complexity, and Character

Happy Wednesday, good people of the blogosphere! Halfway through the week, we are. Wow, the volume of that cheer blew my hair back. Guess you're all looking forward to the three day weekend, huh? Well, I hope you all have a novel you're editing right now and can print these little checklists and make good use of them with your *ahem* time off. Today, you get checklists for scenes, dialogue, complexity (in one), and character (there are three of these). At the end, you'll find a link to a PDF you can download, print, keep, and share! All I ask is that you don't alter it in any way. Thanks! Let's get going!

  • Do your scenes ebb and flow well?
  • Are the four basic happenings taking place?
  1. Action - This is the objective of the scene.
  2. Reaction - What the emotional state of the protagonist is.
  3. More Action - What they do about it.
  4. Deepening - This happens only in the most dramatic scenes.
  • Do you have a great hook, intensity, and a good setup for the next scene?

  • What value are you supplying to your reader (values can be life lessons or new opinions)?
  • Is there a sub-plot that could be added that would give your protagonist (or antagonist) more depth?
  • How will any sub-plots assist you in changing the values of your character?

  • Have you used a lot of he said, she said?
  • Can you turn any of the dialogue tags into action tags?
  • Are you using the proper dialect?
  • Contractions. Do you use them?

Characters (this is broken out in the checklists)
  • Full Name - First, middle, and last along with any other names they've had along the way.
  • Location - Where they live, where they were born, if different, why it changed.
  • Age - Includes birthday, zodiac sign, and recent celebrations.
  • Physical Description - Height, weight, hair color, eye color, shoe size, skin color, manicure?, pedicure?, hair length, eyebrows (V shaped, bushy, pencil thin, etc...), identifying marks, for women: bra size.
  • Mental Description - Self centered, egotistical, timid, brash, vengeful, etc...
  • Reasons for Mental Description - What happened in life to make them that way.
  • Friends - Other characters. Are they major? Minor? Plot changing?
  • Relationships - Spouse, kids, parents - with names and nature of relationship.
  • Goals - What their ultimate life goal is.
  • Career - What they do or want to do.
  • Skills - Any skills they may have.
  • Magical Powers - For fantasy or paranormal. Can they shoot fire from their asses? Lightning bolts from their eyes? Levitate? See through peoples' clothing?
  • Sexual Orientation - Straight, gay, bisexual, etc...
  • Fun - What they do to let their hair down.

Here's the link to the full PDF that has tweaks and little boxes to put checks in: GIMMIE MY FREEBIE!

Enjoy and share!

Have these changed the way you look at your novels?

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


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