When starting a novel, it’s important to fill your world with well-rounded characters – the kind that feel so real your readers love diving into your stories, getting lost in their lives. Today, I want to teach you how to do that with the magical tool of Tarot.
I like to think about what kind of story or genre I’m writing before I grab my deck. Young Adult, Fantasy. Science Fiction, Cozy mystery? Then, grab your tarot deck and give it a shuffle. If I have any other ideas, like which character I’m creating or any story details I already have, I’ll think of that while shuffling, then I’ll choose 1 card.
As soon as you flip the card over, what immediately comes to mind? Any and all thoughts start writing them down. Then pay close attention to the main figure or focal point of the card. How are they dressed? What are they doing?
Once I have established a few things, I’ll move on to the background of the card, paying close attention to color, other figures or animals, and what’s going on – is there any action that helps you with information about this character?
Now, let’s ask some questions:
- Are you getting main character energy? Protagonist or Antagonist? Or is this a side character?
- What gender is this character? Male, female, non-binary?
- What age is this character? Young, old, timeless – like a wizard?
- Are you coming up with any name ideas? Sometimes I get great ideas from something really random on the card and sometimes I don’t.
Once I have these basics established and I’m starting to get a clear picture of who this person is, that’s when I personally bring in the character worksheets you find online. In fact, sometimes I turn those into a tarot spared by pulling cards for each section of the sheet – which can be a fun exercise.
If you are in a writing group, this can be a fun group activity too. Each of you grab a card and go around the group talking about the character you’ve created – you might even get inspired by the other people’s cards – so bonus!
Have you tried something like this before? Did you find it fun or do you have questions about how to make the process easier? Let me know by hitting reply to this email.