June 14, 2011

Do Your Characters Need Therapy?

Have you ever developed a character, given them a unique backstory, only to wonder how they would react in certain situations? Have you wondered how certain personalities act when obstacles litter their path? Well, I have the perfect resource for you!

Your characters just might need some "couch time" with Jeannie Campbell, The Character Therapist. She has an amazing website that offers a variety of resources to help you develop your characters into realistic, believable people. Here's how Jeannie can help aspiring writer's....

1) Write characters more realistically.
Using a search engine to find out information about a mental disorder yields a very different result than asking a therapist who has treated those same problems in real life. Instead of getting a bunch of stale facts, I can help you breathe life into your characters while taking into consideration your unique story world.


2) Plot more feasibly. 
Plotting the external conflict around your characters internal conflict is essential to create tension on every page. Understanding the character’s driving goals and motivation in relation to their emotional state will help you figure out what plot points need to occur to maximize the character’s arc to its fullest potential.


3) Avoid clich├ęd or incorrect depictions of mental disorders.
My passion is helping those not afflicted with mental disorders understand those who are. Since one in four adults have a mental disorder, the likelihood of one of your characters having one is pretty high. But you want every nuance to ring true about the character, not feel cardboard cutout or stereotyped. So pick my brain instead of yours to avoid pitfalls of re-writing later.

Have I piqued your curiosity?  Think your characters might benefit from some couch time?






Jeannie Campbell is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in California. She is Head of Clinical Services for a large non-profit and enjoys working mainly with children and couples. She has a Masters of Divinity in Psychology and Counseling and bachelors degrees in both psychology and journalism. Two of Jeannies “therapeutic romance” manuscripts have garnered the high praise of being finalists in the Genesis Contest for unpublished writers, sponsored by the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), of which she is an active member. She writes a popular monthly column for Christian Fiction Online Magazineand has been featured in many other e-zines, newspapers, and blogs.



2 comments:

  1. thanks sherrinda! i appreciate you helping get the word out! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Jeannie, you're everywhere these days. Nice to see you here and you are amazing with characterization for sure.

    ReplyDelete

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