Dating Your Character: A Sexy Guide to Screenwriting for Film and TV, is based on the principle that interesting characters actually are co-creators in the writing process.
It’s organized into some of the standard stages in an evolving, romantic relationship, launched by a couple of chapters that encourage you to take some personal inventory:
– Casting Your Ideal Character
– The Meet Cute
– The First Date
– Serious Dating
– Moving In Together
– The First Fight
– Making A Commitment
– Hitched Or Ditched
On the way to a kind of trust and growing intimacy, the structure of the book traces the first flush of excitement, any awkward hiccups in communication, and the recognition and reconciliation of your different POVs.
Most books approach character development using a winnowing process involving general categorization and list-making. But, not much in the way of a truly in-depth synthesis of the collage of “facts” in the character’s biography.
The DYC method doesn’t start from the outside in. It doesn’t layer physical descriptions onto archetypal outlines, then color in the flaws and motivation to make that thumbnail sketch more personal.
DYC focuses on the importance of the individuality of characters: their eccentricity, drive, and relative “basis in fact” – inspired in part by people you know or you yourself.