At the 2009 FaithWriters conference, one of the speakers we were privileged to have with us was Linore Rose Burkard, multi-published author of historical romance. More specifically, Regency Romance. Her tagline is “Inspirational Romance for the Jane Austen Soul.”
I initially posted this recap of her workshop Writing Characters of Faith on my blog, but because it was so good, I wanted to share it here. Linore has plenty of expertise in creating Christian characters! This workshop not only covered building faith-filled characters, but also included advice on general character-creating.
Here are a few points to consider as you begin putting together your cast of characters:
What audience are you writing for? Who do you want to read your book? It’s not enough to say “everybody,” because the truth is, your story won’t appeal to everyone. When you know what type of reader will likely be drawn to the story you’re writing, you will be better able to create characters they can relate to.
Even evil characters need sympathetic elements. For the most part, humans are not entirely bad. Even the most evil people have some positive traits. Your goal is to make believable characters that your readers will empathize with.
See your character. Sometimes it helps to visualize your character and what he/she looks like. Browse magazines for faces that “look like” your character. Once you have that point of reference, he/she will be easier to describe, at least physically.
Make your character come alive. Here are a few of the ways your characters come alive on the page:
- Physical attributes
- Quirks – things that set your character apart
- Clothing style
- Psychological attributes
- Inner thoughts and actions – think about whether that particular character would do/think those things.
- Dialogue – the way your character speaks is a powerful way his/her personality will shine through.
Finally, I want to leave you with the one thing Linore said about specifically creating characters of faith that really stuck with me.
The best way to create a Christian character, is to HAVE a Christian character.
Linore Rose Burkard is the creator of “Inspirational Romance for the Jane Austen Soul.” Her characters take you back in time to experience life and love during the era of Regency England (circa 1811 – 1820). Fans of classic romances, such as Pride & Prejudice, Emma, and Sense & Sensibility, will enjoy meeting Ariana Forsythe, a feisty heroine who finds her heart and beliefs tested by high-society London.
Ms. Burkard’s novels include Before the Seasons Ends and The House in Grosvenor Square (coming April, 2009). Her stories blend Christian faith and romance with well-researched details from the Regency period. Her books and monthly newsletter captivate readers with little-known facts, exciting stories, and historical insights. Experience a romantic age, where timeless lessons still apply to modern life. And, enjoy a romance that reminds you happy endings are possible for everyone.
Publisher’s Weekly affirms, “Ms. Burkard’s command of period detail is impressive, evident in material details, but also in dialogue. Her novels even help non-Regencyphiles learn the difference between ladies’ pelisses and spencers…On the whole, it’s a tasty confection.”
Ms. Burkard began writing when she couldn’t find a Regency romance with an inspirational twist. “There were Christian books that approached the genre,” she says, “But, they fell short of being a genuine Regency. I knew that many women like me want stories that are historically authentic and offer glimpses of God’s involvement in our lives. So, I finally gave up looking and decided to write one myself.”
Ms. Burkard was raised in New York, where she graduated magna cum laude from the City University of New York with a Bachelor of Arts in English literature. She lives with her husband and five children in a town full of antique stores and gift shops in southwestern Ohio. Her hobbies include working on four new Regency novels, family movie nights, swimming, and gardening.
Visit Linore online at www.linoreburkard.com