Character Tarot

dtwheeloffortuneI’ve been introduced to the concept of using Tarot to aid in writing. In this case, I’m working on “Benen’s Burden,” a historical romance for NaNoWriMo.

I decided to draw a single card that represents Benen, the hero, at the beginning of the story. The card that came up is the X of Cups (reversed).

I don’t usually read just reverse or upright meanings, but in this case, it applies.

Meanings: Quarrels, annoyance, hypocrisy, violence, surfeit, opposition.

Benen is an Irish clan-chief who was badly injured and rather disfigured in a fire that was set during a raid. At the beginning, he is angry, anxious, somewhat quarrelsome (particularly with those who think he is all but dead), and looking for opposition everywhere, even where none is intended.

The reverse meaning of the X of Cups is quite appropriate in this case. The upright meanings signify what he is denying himself, what he thinks is beyond his reach. Of course, being the warrior-man he is, he admits this to absolutely no one, even himself.

It’s an interesting exercise. In the next few days, I wll also do a single-card drawing for the heroine as she is at the beginning of the story.


3 thoughts on “Character Tarot

  1. I actually teach workshops on how to use Tarot for Writers. Another thing you can try is to draw three cards for your character. 1st card is occupation. 2nd card is personality. 3rd card is a quirk. Then write a “cocktail introduction” where you have to say, “Hello! This is my friend, __________. S/he is works as a __________. S/he’s very __________. But I just learned that she loves/does/etc __________.

  2. Thanks. I’m going to pull out the cards tonight. I have some evil characters that I am struggling to understand their motivation – even though they are evil, I do want to understand them better.

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