This book seeks to be a set of tools - literary crowbars, chisels, mallets, pliers, and tongs. It can be used to pry, chip, yank, and sift good characters out of the place where they live in the imagination. Orson Scott Card aims to explain in depth the techniques of inventing, developing, and presenting characters, plus handling viewpoint in novels and short stories. With specific examples, he spells out narrative options - the choices the reader can make in creating fictional people so 'real' that people will feel they know them like members of their own families. It is possible to learn how to - Draw characters from a variety of sources; Make characters show who they are by the things they do and say, and by their individual 'style'; Develop characters readers may love-or love to hate; Distinguish among major characters, minor characters, and walk-ons, and develop each appropriately; Choose the most effective viewpoint to reveal the characters and move the storytelling, and more.