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Ultimately I discovered the truth to what many writers had told me (but I hadn’t quite believed)—that once the writing started, the characters took on “lives of their own,” taking me in directions I hadn’t anticipated.
For example, if the character’s Problem involves falling in love, then issues of commitment and self-worth will often be part of her Problem.
So you’ll want to explore past moments of pride and success as well as shame and rejection to flesh out how she’s come to feel the way she does about herself, and how she behaves toward people she’s attracted to.
You do have to explore all or even most of the following areas for any particular character.
Rather, pick two or five or 10 areas you find particularly interesting or productive, or which speak to the needs of the particular character given the Problem, Insight and Decision at hand.
I obediently employed this method for my first two novels, only to find it lacking.
Inevitably, I’d end up with a static laundry list of information that helped me .
Why do you think Potok chose to tell the story from Reuven’s point of view?
At times, each father feels threatened by the other’s views.
It often matters little how we feel or what we think—thoughts and feelings can be changed, replaced by other thoughts and feelings.
Our actions, on the other hand, occur in the world, and cannot be taken back.