Creating Living People: The Art of Relatable Characters

Guest post by author Preston Norton

Ernest Hemingway once wrote, “When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.” Now, that’s all well and good, but not all of us can be Hemingway, winner of the Pulitzer and Nobel Prize and such. Let’s be honest, we’re not that smart. So, how exactly does one create living people? What Hemingway means, of course, is that they need to feel like living people. They need to evoke something inside of us, something that speaks of the human experience. This is important for almost all characters, even the inhuman ones. Why?

Because if we can’t relate to these characters, why should we care?