Character Worksheets

A useful tool for building and tracking the continuity of characters is the character file, or worksheet. Whether physical (a folder full of notes, or certain pages from the manuscript with key details highlighted, for instance) or digital (a spreadsheet, or a questionnaire).

Click here to download a pdf of a worksheet that I built for students and Hub members for developing and tracking individual characters: Character Worksheet

Click here for a version of the worksheet in Word, for those who wish to work in the document digitally:  Character Worksheet

Click here for a spreadsheet for tracking multiple characters (with special thanks to Beth for helping to create it!):  Character Continuity Spreadsheet

Of, if you prefer to build your own spreadsheet, here are some details to consider incorporating:

  • Character Name
  • Age (relative to time period of story)
  • Nationality
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Eye Color (Glasses?)
  • Hair – Color, Style,  thick/fine, straight/curly, long/short/bald, etc.
  • Build – Height, Weight, Body Type/Shape
  • Complexion
  • Style of Dress
  • Distinguishing Marks / Physical Features – scars, moles, etc.
  • Characteristics / Mannerisms
  • Speaking Voice – Vocabulary, Accent
  • Personality
  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Back Story
  • Family background – Parents? Siblings?
  • Key Relationships – Married, single, divorced, significant other? Children?
  • Home / Hometown
  • Education
  • Hobbies, interests, activities
  • Job(s) / Occupation
  • Religion/Philosophy
  • Fears
  • Loves
  • Frustrations
  • Habits
  • Character Flaws
  • Other notable details – Car? Pets? Possessions? Influences?
  • Role in the story (protagonist, antagonist, instigator, love interest, foil, etc.)
  • What does s/he want?
  • What’s in his/her way? What’s the problem?
  • What compounds the problem / raises the stakes?
  • How does s/he go about getting what s/he wants?
  • How does s/he change or what does s/he learn by the end?

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