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Leaving Paw Prints in our Hearts... Via Literature!

This week I felt the need to celebrate something that is near and dear to almost everyone’s hearts…. Animals! Reading literature that features animals gives my heart a jolt of stress-relieving happiness. Writing and creating animal characters? Well… For some it can be quite the struggle. For this reason, I have found a few things to keep in mind (and potentially guide you) when creating that animal character for your story:

· The first thing to consider is the role that the animal will be playing in the story. For example: Will the animal be used to build another character’s persona? Is this the animal’s autobiography?

· Are you writing this story for a specific audience? Keep this in mind, because you do not want to be writing for animal lovers and then create an animal character whose fate ends up being sad and cruel (this might not go over well).

· What is your inspiration for creating an animal character? Is this character based on a real-life animal? Is the story about a real-life animal? Do you really just like kittens and want to inspire others who share that same love?

· Will your animal character be realistic (non-fiction) or unrealistic (fiction; animal may have some human traits, etc.) Will the characterization fit in with the genre you are writing?

· Does the animal character have a history? If so, what is the history and how will you tell it?

It is never a bad idea to read other stories that feature animal characters. It might just give you some insight on how to properly deliver your own character ideas! Some of my personal favorites include:

A Dog’s Life: Autobiography of a Stray by Ann M. Martin


Homer's Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, or How I Learned about Love and Life with a Blind Wonder Cat by Gwen Cooper

Let me know if any of these tips and guidelines have helped you with your writings! Or let me know if you have any tips or guidelines of your own for writing on animals! Feel free to comment on this blog post or on our Facebook page! And remember, you have what it takes to create amazing works of literature! Don’t be afraid to be controversial! Tell your stories how you want and let those creative juices flow!

This Blog Posting was approved by Hagar (office cat extraordinaire).

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