Characters in Their Free Time

freetime

Photo Credit: The Best News

I don’t know about you, but my characters tend to have a little bit of free time during the course of their stories. In my experience reading PI novels sometimes all one can do is wait and see what happens. And I’d have to say that that’s also the case in most stories. I mean, Harry Potter has plenty of free time in his stories, right? And if a boy wizard who has Voldemort after him can have free time, then so can your characters.

Now let’s see. In my first book I had my characters go for a run, watch sports on TV, watch the news on TV, lay out by the pool, read, and probably a bunch of other things I can’t remember off the top of my head at two in the morning as I write this. To me, that sounds pretty normal. For them to be doing things that you’d expect any typical person to be doing at a given time. But your character probably also has hobbies. See, that’s the thing. I’m NOT only talking hobbies here, I’m talking what is actually described in the text. Sure it’s nice that your character likes long walks on the beach at sunset, but that’s not the discussion we’re having. I’m talking about actions.

So tell me, what do you have your characters do during their free time during their stories?

Oh, Andrew also enjoyed a nap and had a quick gym session in my book.

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10 thoughts on “Characters in Their Free Time

  1. My character had the problem of chronicling her free time, but she had numerous activities like swimming and other things. There were occasions she had to admit to just lounging on a sofa and watching TV even… Aside from that, almost every other activity eventually built to something.

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  2. My character is a witch so she works on potions and reading old tomes of enchantment spells, and talking to her familiar of course!

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  3. I’m not currently writing anything long enough to have characters but all of the little weirdos from my 100 word stories sit in a waiting room, and every time the door opens they all look over hopefully. I pluck out a random one sat in the corner, and pull them through the door. When it shuts again, all the characters gaze back down at their laps, and sigh sadly.

    Not really 🙂 Good post though! I’ve often wondered about what a random character’s doing when I’m at a point in the book about someone else.

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  4. I’ve had characters work on their costumes for a cosplay event. And hang out having coffee.

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  5. Hi. A few characters traveled and had hobbies. One built her own car. The other knitted unique clothes to give away. So, I always make sure they’re doing other things. Not just the norm.

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  6. One of my characters was moonlighting as a 1940s styled drag queen.

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  7. On my characters’ free time, they go on excursions to town or sit out in the garden and think, usually about current matters they are dealing with.

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  8. One goes hunting. The other reads.

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  9. I had my princess take horseback rides.

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  10. I wish my characters had more free time! Unfortunatly, having them lounge around and do recreational activities would throw off the pacing. But there are a few ‘quiet conversation’ scenes that are some of my favorite in the whole book. Mostly when the characters are taking a moment to sleep/eat, or half the characters are out progressing the plot while the other half are kind of grounded. So, I guess the characters spend most of their free time getting to know each other.

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