Some time ago I read Roz Morris’s first Nail Your Novel book, (Nail Your Novel: Why Writers Abandon Books and How You Can Draft, Fix and Finish With Confidence)which gives advice on what to do with a first draft and how to work on it so that you don’t end up hurling the dratted thing into the shredder and taking up crochet instead.
It so impressed me with its step-by-step guide and common sense that when I saw the author had published this follow up I bought it without even reading the blurb.
Nail Your Novel: Bring Characters To Life is another gem of a book from Roz. Easy to read and broken down into manageable sections it helps you to create believable characters who won’t just be names on the paper. She carefully steers you away from identikit characters who all sound alike in spite of their different ages, cultures and backgrounds and uses examples from well known novels to help demonstrate successful characterization. She shows you how to create believable dialogue and provides a highly useful toolbox to equip you with all you need to know to engage your readers and make them eager to read on.
Not only does she deal with the protagonists, but she also helps you to think about the secondary characters and shows how to create a whole cast that will ring true and ensure that your main characters are not existing in solitary confinement. Heroes and heroines that are not too heroic, villains that are not too villainous, avoiding the stereotype and cliche, the importance of realistic dialogue, all these and much more are covered in this fabulous book, and it’s all written in an easy to understand language that doesn’t make you clutch your forehead and reconsider the crochet.
An essential reference for the would-be writer, I would recommend it without hesitation. Make sure you get the first book, too, if you haven’t already. You need never look at a crochet hook again. 5/5