In my current WiP, two characters are underdeveloped.
I’ve gone back and highlighted where I can add scenes so the reader can discover more about them. But I did this without really knowing who they are.
I’ve written dialogue which makes them sound similar to other characters and stumbled through creating their history as I wrote.
It hasn’t worked.
I usually find images for my main characters.
I also work out their education, their beliefs, their former loves and what turns them on. And I add a one line catchphrase that sums them up. Minor characters often find their own personality. This hasn’t been the case with Edgar and Sonya.
So, I did the same for these two and, while searching for images that matched the way I saw them in my head, settled for pictures that I was drawn to.
I now have fresh ideas on who these people are.
I’ll be reading through the manuscript from the point where they are introduced and altering scenes that include them. The ‘new improved’ Edgar and Sonya will take place of the wishy washy ones.
Sonya is now cheekier and a little younger, and Edgar is more charismatic. He was a pretty-boy with a lack of life experience before. He has more purpose in the story now.
The last time I had underdeveloped characters, I cut one out.
In Winter Masquerade, both the Detective and the Captain stood around doing nothing most of the time, offering little to the plot. The Detective was more important so he became camper and more comedic.
The Captain became mysterious. She is talked about often and is first seen by the reader at the masquerade ball, enchanting everyone with her costume and her grace. Yet, we never hear her speak.
But that book was a novella. With my current WiP, I need to add length to make it a novel. Sonya and Edgar are my saviours.