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DIY MFA by Jacquelyn Mitchard, Gabriela Pereira

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Chapter 8

Create Compelling Characters

Any discussion of writing craft must begin with characters. They are the heart and soul of your story. Without them, your story is nothing more than a sequence of events. Characters give us someone to root for (or against) and make us care about the story. They make the story personal.

Characters also give us a lens through which we experience that story. We can read about World War II, study the different battles, and watch video clips from the era, but those events take on a more powerful meaning when we see them through the eyes of Liesel Meminger, the young protagonist in Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief. Similarly, we can read about the estate and inheritance laws of Regency Period England, but those details ...

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