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Story Engineering by Larry Brooks

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8THE FUNDAMENTAL ESSENCE OF CHARACTER

There’s very little about writing that’s more common, boringly predominant, and patently obvious than the vast oeuvre of advice on characterization. Our characters need to be rich, deep, and compelling, and miles distanced from stereotype. Okay, we get that.

Still, character stumps and challenges us.

Some writing gurus beat the character drum to the exclusion of all else. They’ll tell you that story is character. That plot is nothing more than giving your characters something to do. That theme is nothing more than allowing your readers to observe your characters dealing with the consequences of their decisions, thus mirroring and commenting on reality itself.

Maybe. Then again, saying that character is

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