The next five writing tips are all going to be about motive. "Five tips?" you ask. "Seriously? Is motive really that important?" Actually, you wouldn't ask that, because you know motives are hugely important. How important?
Consider these stories.
What if Hunger Games was a story about a girl who had to kill a bunch of other kids to get everything she ever wanted? Would you still be rooting for her?
What if Harry Potter wanted to kill Voldemort so he could get his name in the paper?
What if Cinderella wanted to get the prince to make her sisters cry?
A lot of times when I talk to writers about their story, they tell me what the character is doing. But as soon as I ask "Why?" the character is doing that, they start to stutter.
Ask yourself this about your character in every story you write. What do they want most right now? What has happened in their life to make them want it? What happens if they get it? What happens if they don't?
Going back to Hunger Games, what does Katniss want most when the books starts? To protect her sister.
What happened in her life to make her want that? Her father died and her mother had a breakdown.
What happens if she gets it? Everything is cool.
What happens if she doesn't? Someone will pay.
As a reader, I need to root for your character. The motive is what makes me root for them. I may not root for a girl to kill a bunch of other kids. But I CAN root for her to take care of her little sister.
Can your character's motives change? Tune in tomorrow.:) Good night and good writing!