How to Ensure Your Characters Aren’t Just Puppets Being Manipulated Through a Plot
In today's Books with Hooks segment, Dongwon Song, an agent at Howard Morhaim Literary Agency who specializes in the sci-fi and fantasy genres, joins Bianca to look at four query letters. The two discuss the difference between sci-fi, fantasy, and speculative fiction; the very specific sub-genre of magical realism; the length of queries in sci-fi/fantasy genres; being deliberate with the limited real estate in a query, even when world building; driving forward plot at all times; the concept of looking through a 'keyhole' when writing a query; when to italicize foreign words; the importance of using stakes to pull in an agent in the query; starting with grief in a query; and the importance of using author names when comping.
After which, Bianca chats with Kristen Bird, author of I Love It When You Lie, about how to choose your characters; multi-POV stories; subverting the mystery genre; interviewing your characters to understand character motivations; basing characters on people IRL; using setting as a tool to develop characters; and factoring in a character’s misbelief.
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Kristen can be found on Instagram @kristenbirdwrites and on Twitter @kbirdwrites. Her website is www.kristenbird.com.
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