Monday, April 14, 2014

L: the Lie

Continuing with this month's A to Z Challenge, I have chosen K.M. Weiland's post "The Lie Your Character Believes" for the letter "L." This is one of my favorite posts on writing, so I feel I must share her genius. For the full article, read here:
"The lie your character believes is the foundation for his character arc. This is what's wrong in his world. Once you know what's wrong, you then get to set about figuring out how to make it right."  

I have a few lies to share. This first lie is found in my debut novel, Free Runner, (Saguaro Books 2014). 14 yr old free runner/surfer Cam believes life was better back home and wants nothing more than to return to Southern California. He is convinced their move to London is part of his father's selfish agenda.

WIP: A 13 yr old boy believes he only needs one friend in life--his sidekick, Tommy. He also believes his arch nemesis, a cute green-eyed girl he nicknamed Snake Eyes, hates his guts.
Wrong again. He will be shocked to find out the truth. :) 

In one sentence, tell me the lie, in your published novel or in your WIP, that your character believes. Or maybe you have a favorite t.v. series or a movie that has a great lie that motivates the MC. Remember, the lie will turn out to be false and he will come to grips with the reality at some point in the latter part of the novel/show. You don't have to convince me of the lie, just your character.

#atozchallenge #amwriting #K.M.Weiland  #MondayBlogs


  1. Fun game! Let's the book I'm writing now, I'd say the lie is that she believes she can't fix things...when actually she learns she can. She also learns that not everyone will think she's crazy if she tells the truth about what's happening to her.

  2. My main character believes that the plantation owner she forced herself to marry (in order to help her family out of a financial bind) murdered a slaves. It takes place in 1859 and 1860, on the eve of the Civil War.

    Smart post--I haven't thought about what a powerful plot device a lie can be even though it is driving my own novel.

  3. That's a helpful way to develop the character and story.
    In my first book, the lie the character believes is that he doesn't need anyone.
    (Jennifer, did you know word verification is still on?)

    1. I thought I fixed that:) Must not have saved it. Thanks! Hopefully, I took care of it. I'm so brain dead when it comes to technology!! P.S. Your lie sounds like a lie we sell to ourselves:)

    2. You fixed it! Sorry, hated to leave a comment about it, but I couldn't find your email.

  4. Great post for the letter 'L'!

  5. I've never heard about this- the lie your character believes- but it's so true.
    I had one character believe escaping from her average life would be awesome, and another thinking she'd gotten over the past. The one I'm working on now, my MC thinks she's a bad person who doesn't deserve to be loved.
    Great post!

  6. Awesome reminder of digging out the core elements in your story.

    Alexia believes she's doomed to a predetermined fate (arranged marriage without love), but discovers the power to decide her own future. (In England, the 1760's, coming from a noble family.)

    True Heroes from A to Z

  7. I have a CP who believes in this and was encouraged by editors to use it to help hammer out her character arcs. My characters believe a lot of lies, and when they think they've overcome them, the lies can turn out to be truths. It's all subjective and shades of gray for me - and I love twists! ;)

  8. I'm going to have to mull over this thought. I hadn't heard this before (at least in this form).

    Hmmm... In one of my stories, the MC believes that her magic isn't very powerful, she's barely a wizard, and that attack on her life wasn't meant for her.

    I'm going to have to put more thought into this.

    Liz A. from Laws of Gravity

  9. In my soon-to-be-released novel, my MC is sneaky, so lies abound.


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