So what makes a character come alive for me? I have to see the world through their eyes and with their perspective. This is the first step. The second step is immersing myself in their lives. If it is not real to me, then it is not real to my readers, but that is a secondary consideration.
I am not an outliner. I simply can’t stick to that and I have tried. I am a panzer as the story comes to me as it will and through the eyes of the characters. They dictate what will happen next, not me. I just go along with the flow, hoping something reasonable comes out of my musings.
To a certain extent, beta readers also have a huge say in what happens next. I will never, ever, forget the death threats I got as a result of killing off a popular character in the second book of the Shadow series. I found I had to unkill him in an unprecedented hurry. Score? Beta readers one. Me … nil I fixed the problem tout suite. Takes a moment out to thank all those responsible for the death threats. Yep, you were right. .He really needed to be there. The second book, Sword of Shadows, is scheduled for publication in 2014 by Kristell Ink, my publishers. There is a third book in the offing.