November is National Novel Writing Month. People all over the world are busy typing up their stories with the goal of 50,000 words by November 30. You can find out more HERE.

In honor of NaNoWriMo, we’ll look at some exercises from Corrine Kenner’s Tarot for Writers using The Steampunk Tarot.

In today’s exercise, we’ll look at gathering a cast of characters. In later posts, we’ll flesh out one character and then give them something to do (plot).

The first spread Kenner gives in the chapter on Character Creation is a simple line of five cards. They represent, in order:

Protagonist, Antagonist, Protagonist’s Foil, Antagonist’s Foil, and Supporting Character.

Protagonists, of course, are the hero’s or main characters. Antagonists are the heroes opponents. Foils are side-kicks that highlight the Main Characters strengths and weaknesses. Think Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes. Supporting Characters are other characters who help move the story along but are not main characters.

For our story, we The Sun, The Hanged Man, the Queen of Cups, the 9 of swords, and the 3 of Cups

It looks to me like we have a large and complex group of characters. I’ll share my thoughts, but would love to hear yours in the comments.

Protagonist: A brother and sister who had a happy childhood and close relationship. Until….

Antagonist: the brother turns traitor, forsaking their heritage and beliefs

Protagonist’s foil: an older woman of deep feelings and who has, perhaps, revenge on her mind

Antagonist’s foil: a mentally unstable woman who is tortured by her role in turning brother against sister

Supporting character: three young, eclectic women who live for adventure and for celebrating those adventures with gusto

I wonder what these characters will get up to. Hmmmm. Tune in later this month to find out! Or pull some cards yourself and tell us your version of the story!


Written by Barbara Moore
The tarot has been a part of Barbara Moore’s personal and professional lives for over a decade. In college, the tarot intrigued her with its marvelous blending of mythology, psychology, art, and history. Later, she served as the tarot specialist for Llewellyn Publications. Over the years, she has ...