The characters that people a narrative are the backbone of a story’s world, but creating compelling, whole characters that embody the facets and nuances of humanity can be a challenge. In this workshop, we will explore techniques of point-of-view to anchor characters in a psychological reality, discuss the role of the unconscious in the development and “on the page” writing of characters, and consider the connection of how point-of-view and characterization lead to both the “voice” of the character and the authorial voice, i.e.: style—both of which impact how a reader interacts with characters. We will utilize breakaway rooms for participants to experiment on their own, then reconvene to share and discuss the results of the exercises. Developing characters can go beyond a dossier understanding of them, whether they are the stars of the show or simply the dayplayers in a single scene.

Attendees should bring 1 page of their own writing to the workshop to try out point-of-view exercises.

This workshop is available to anyone aged 18 or older for a $55 fee.

Unless otherwise stated, all times listed are US Pacific Time.

We offer a limited number of scholarships for each class to Black and Indigenous writers and writers from other marginalized backgrounds on a first come, first served basis. Please email us at with a one-paragraph statement about your scholarship interest and/or need. Please include the name of the class you would like to apply the scholarship to.

By participating in any Clarion West activity, you are agreeing to our Code of Conduct, the Clarion West Harassment Policy, and our Zoom Guidelines.

Clarion West will refund all class fees if the request is made 30 days prior to the class date. Refund requests made within 30 days of the class will be honored if we can fill the seat. Any exceptions are subject to approval by our workshop staff.