How to Write a Profile Story
A profile story is a portrait of a person in words. Like the best painted portraits, the best profiles capture the character, spirit and style of their subjects. They delve beneath the surface to look at what motivates people, what excites them, what makes them interesting. Good profiles get into the heart of the person and find out what makes them tick.
How to start:
Before you write the story, think about your goal – the type of story you want to write
• Decide what your angle is: What is interesting or unusual about your character? What is this person’s story?
• All of these things will affect the direction you take with your story.
• Set the background.
Now it’s time to bring this together:
We have a Name for our character.
We have a good Character Description to help us picture the character.
We have a Backstory, either in paragraph or list form.
Here’s a simple Backstory example of all that put to use:
Character Description: This young man is in his early twenties, sporting a short beard and grey eyes. A trace of a thin scar is evident on his left cheek. He is wearing green-dyed leather armor, black belt and high boots and has a short sword hung from his baldric.
Backstory: “Tate” grew up near the village of Werth, not too far from Ar. He’s fairly educated and came from a good family, although he’s had a taste for getting himself in over his head as a child. His Uncle Norhan told him stories of adventures and such, which got him “curious” about seeking fame and fortune.
When he was fifteen, he decided to explore the Forest near his home, where he was grazed on his left cheek by a small larl. Since then he’s slowed down “a little” in his ways as part of the town militia, if there’s something exciting to do and he gets wind of it, he’ll definitely pitch in.
Now in his twenties, he’s a bit more respectful towards the wild. In his belt pouch, he carries a locket he found with a drawing of a rather attractive young girl and the word “Anna” in styled calligraphy.
Perhaps he can find out who she is, who knows?
So, “Tate” is ready for whatever awaits him. He has a past, present and a future to grow with and role-play. This backstory could be as detailed or as loose as needed. The main thing is having something you can start role-playing with and get a feel for the character and have fun with.