Elemental Character Spread

Surprise, surprise it’s another creative writing spread. Oh, you don’t find that surprising? 😉 Anyway, this one is designed to help you explore your characters and it’s based on the elements: spirit, air, fire, water and earth. See the layout with descriptions below.

Elemental Character Spread

#1 - Spirit - This card looks at the character’s essential self or their core personality. You could also look at this as their highest potential, so the person they will grow into by the end of the story. Another way to interpret this card is the character’s destiny or calling.

#2 - Air - This card  shows the character’s mental state, what is on their mind or what they are worried about. It can also reveal character traits like sharp wittedness or cunning or anything related to what is going on inside their head.

#3 - Fire - This card will tell you how this character acts. Their relationship with action or their general mode of operation. Some questions you can ask when reading this position include how motivated are they? Are they moving or inert? Do they act emotionally, rationally, impulsively, with wisdom? Do they tend to lead or follow?

#4 - Water - The card of water will show you the emotional state of your character, what they are feeling, how they interact with their emotions or what role their emotions play in their experience. This card can also speak about their internal experience, what they hold in, what about them is unseen by others.

#5 - Earth - Here is where you can suss out logistical aspects of your character, job, appearance, their position in the physical world, their day to day experience. It also looks at the environment that they exist in or the social/societal constructs they have to navigate.

Spread Variation:
Feel free to use more than one card for each element. If you like to work with pairs of cards or sets of three, you can draw 2 or 3 cards per elemental position. This can also give you a bit of a timeline in terms of how the character grows and how their relationship with the elements change as the story progresses. I would perhaps only use one card for the Spirit position because as “essential self” or “destiny,” this is unlikely to change…but that’s just how I would do it. As always, you do what seems most right for you.

Before I let you go to scribble your creative hearts out, I wanted to let you know that I am teaching a tarot and writing workshop on April 25 from 7-9p. Here is the link to the event: Using Tarot to Prompt & Plot. If you are local or visiting the Portland area, I would love to see you there.

For the time being this is an in-person class, but I may adapt it to an online workshop in the future if there is enough interest, so please let me know if that is something you would like to see so I can gauge interest.

Enjoy the spread and have a great weekend y’all.

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