Want to test out a character for your novel or short story?
Listen to the story, 'Bullet in The Brain,' by Tobias Wolff. It's a New Yorker podcast, here. It takes less than 20 mins and includes an interesting discussion at the end. Or read this pdf version, Download Bullet
Pick out a point of irritation for your character - something everyday like the bank teller closing her position when there’s still a long queue waiting to be served.
Write for twenty minutes about this moment. Have your character react but then escalate the reaction to a full-blown outburst. Push the idea until your character is under extraordinary pressure. Watch what happens…
After 20 minutes what has this revealed about your character? Could you make a short story using this material? Might it add a point of tension in your novel?