So, that’s my actual wall. Those are two of the seven GMC charts I have hung there. My two main protagonists, actually. On the top left, you’ll see an extra note: the lesson they need to learn by the end of the story. In this novel, my antagonist and her minion don’t have these. Because they fail to learn a lesson; they’re villains. Not all antagonists are villains, though. In some stories, an antagonist could be a friend or family member or even lover. In order to for the antagonist have a happy ending, they need to arc as well.
This is hard, hard, hard until it’s not hard. And then you have it, for this manuscript, anyway, and everything makes sense. Buy the book. Do some research. If you’ve already written a story, do your GMC.
I by no means claim expertness on this subject; but I know what works for me and how I use it. I would be happy to answer any question directed to me about my process in the comments or on Twitter.
Character Development Series
Turns out, I had so much to say about developing characters, I wrote a series of posts. Here they are, in order:
Develop Characters Without Worksheets
Writing Free Form Character Biographies
How to Find a Character’s GMC?
My GMC “In the Wild”
Plotting and Motivation