I sent out a project to an editor and received a reject. I love the story and think it’s one of the best of all the stories I’ve written, so I wanted to take a good look at her reason (s) for rejecting it. She said she couldn’t empathize with the character and the character lacked emotional depth.
Now that statement struck a cord with me. I know bringing emotion to the page is hard for me, but I’m determined to conquer that writing flaw because this story deserves to be told and felt.
Carol Burnside’s blog from a few days ago raised an interesting point: the writer has to feel the emotion before the reader can.
Robert McKee, the author of Story says, “The only reliable source of emotional truth is yourself. If you stay outside your characters, you inevitably write emotional clichés. To create revealing human reactions, you must not only get inside your character, but get inside yourself.”
How do you get inside yourself? You can portray how you would react in that crisis, but is it how your protagonist would act?
Now this isn’t meant to be a blog on self-analysis. But I’m interested in how you get your reader to empathize with your character? How do you make sure they have emotional depth and that emotion is true?
Connie Gillam is the author of The 5th Realm, a paranormal Young Adult novel:
Coming in March 2014: Lakota Dreaming.
Find the author at: