Character Development

The Sorting

Your protagonist’s name is called. They approach the stool, where an old and tattered hat lies. They put on the hat. They will next hear one of four words called out: Ravenclaw, Gryffindor, Slytherin, or Hufflepuff. Which one is it? Write down the reasons detailing why.

Discuss this exercise

Feel inspired? Share your story below.

Similar Exercises

Get your creative juices flowing with these similar creative writing exercises.

Character Development

Magic #50

At the root of all writer’s block? Fear. You’ll recognize it by the questions you ask yourself when you sit down to write: Can I really finish an entire story? Am I a good enough writer …

Character Development

3-2-1 Gone

Your protagonist opens a purse or a desk drawer and finds three objects. By the end of your piece there’s only one item left. What happens to the other two?

Character Development


This is a challenge that will exercise your prowess at one of the oft-used components of English: punctuation. To start off, write a paragraph of no more than 500 words about the benefits of skin …

Character Development

The Name Game

Here is your challenge: for the next week, collect fun names. I’ve collected them for years in a little notebook — from obituaries, news stories, random lists, and spam. Spam is great for funny names. Then …

Character Development

Fear Factor

Nothing can create conflict for your characters like good old-fashioned fear. Take time now to define your protagonist's biggest fear. Is it something physical (e.g. tight spaces or flying in an airplane) or internal (e.g. …

Character Development

Alternative Timelines

If you haven't already, write a rough synopsis of where your story might be headed. If you already have a pretty good idea of this, but feel stuck trying to get there, try writing a …