I’m on the third and last book of Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, and I was thinking about his concept of daemons — the animal form of the owner’s soul. In Pullman’s trilogy, children’s daemons can change form, until they settle into their one true form once puberty hits. The form of the person’s daemon indicates the nature of the person.

And so I thought — that could be an interesting exercise for character development! (Hooray, I’m giving you homework on a Friday!) We’ll give it a snazzy name too:

Tracy’s Daemon Exercise

or maybe snazzier:

Tracy’s Super-Fun-Aren’t-You-Glad-You-Read-Her-Blog-Today-And-Now-You’ve-Got-An-Assignment Daemon Exercise!

1.) Write down the names of all your main characters, antagonists and protagonists.

2.) Next to each name, put down what their animal daemon would be.

3.) Next to that, list the personality traits that the character and their daemon would have in common.

**Extra Credit** Look at the daemons/character traits of your protagonist and antagonist — how would they compare against each other? What do they have in common? How will their traits foil or help the other?

Phew! That wasn’t so bad, was it? And now you can use this list to help with character and plot development. Happy writing/Friday!

Oh, and before I let you go, check out Carolyn Abiad’s blog for an interview with me and to tell her “Congratulations!” on her 100th post!


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