People often ask me whether the plot should come first or the character.
Personally, I think it is a mixture of both. But the glimmer of a plot always comes to me first of all. Then I will immediately start to ‘people’ it with at least two very different characters who will bring that plot to life.
A convincing character will have personality traits and motives which then direct the way the story is going.
For instance, in my new novel WE ALL HAVE OUR SECRETS, Harold (the elderly owner of Willowmead House), appears difficult at times and extremely kind the next.
What (and who) has made him like this?
Ah! That is then revealed by the plot.
Think of a story idea. How about a grandfather telling his 15 year old old granddaughter about his memories of the Queen’s coronation?
Then think of the people in this one sentence. Supposing you then went back and in time and wrote about the grandfather’s life and all the ups and downs?
Yet let’s not forget the granddaughter. Maybe you could have alternate chapters about her life - and how she’s in trouble for some reason.
Could the grandfather help her?
This is just an idea which came to me as I was writing this. But I might explore this further.
Why don’t you do the same?