Establishing the main players in our story was only the first step in transporting our story bible into the Archivos app, where we’ll have every character in our budding world right at our fingertips, but how are those characters actually connected to one another? The interesting thing about people, whether in the real world in our stories, is how connected they all are, sometimes without even realizing it.
Are your characters good friends? Blood relations? Husband and wife? Is it possible they’ve never even met and their only real tie to one another is a mutual acquaintance? Regardless of the intricacies, it’s important to keep track of the relationships your characters share and Archivos is the perfect tool to keep them all straight.
Connecting Characters in Archivos
In our last blog post, we added important characters to our world setting, and now it’s time to make connections between them all. Head to the left-hand corner of the app and click the icon for your story setting.
With your story setting open, it’s time to start creating relationships for your characters.
1) Choose Your Element: All created elements are on display within your story setting. Simply click the element you wish to alter to make changes.
2) Relationships: At the top of the created page you have two options–Details and Relationships. The Details are all the information we added when creating the character element itself. The Relationships tab opens a new window where you can add and edit relationships to any other story element in this setting. You can draw relations between characters, a character and a location, a character and event, a character and item, a character and organization, and even a character and a discipline. Simply click on Relationships icon to begin adding relationships.
3) +Add Relationship: Once you’ve opened the Relationship area, you can begin adding relationships by clicking on the +Add Relationship link. This will expand the window, offering several options for you to define the relationship between the elements you’ll be connecting.
4) Enter Relationship: Type your related character into the Relationship Element box. This system is intuitive and will offer options for characters who’ve already been added to the system. Simply click the applicable character to set it.
5) Relationship Type: After adding your relationship element, you will be given the following options to choose from regarding the type of relationship between characters: Professional, Political, Familial, Personal. For this particular relationship, I’m going to choose Personal.
6) Relationship: Once you’ve chosen the Relationship Type, you’ll be given the opportunity to further define the nature of the relationship between the connected characters. In this instance, it reads: Is personally associated with. However, had we chosen another Relationship Type, for example, the Professional Relationship, new options such as is the Professional Superior of, is the Professional Subordinate to, is the Professional Peer of would be made available.
7) Relationship Tags: The tagging feature allows you to further define the relationship between characters beyond the basic offerings. For example, the two characters I’ve connected are lovers, so adding the #lovers tag puts them into a category all their own.
8) Publish Changes: Now that you’ve firmly established your character relationship, scroll your mouse to the upper right corner where you’ll see a Publish Changes button. Clicking that button will save and publish your changes.
9) Add All Relationships: Continue adding relationships until you’ve connected your character to everyone in the database they share a connection with.
10) Relationships: Once you’ve added all possible relationships, you will see the images listed under the Relationships tab.
A Tapestry of Characters in the Story Web
Whether you’re working with a small group of characters, or a full entourage that will need meticulous organization to keep track of, Archivos helps keep all your players, both major and minor, in line and properly connected to one another so you’ll never lose track of that stepsister’s cousin’s boyfriend who will make his big debut in chapter 22.
The easiest way to access your character profile is by clicking on the Story Web icon at the top of your Story Elements page.
You can also head out to the Story Summary page. You can find your Story Summary page by clicking the Archivos link in the upper left-hand corner and returning to the Story Catalog.
In the Story Summary, clicking on the character you added relationships for will open the Story Web for that character, drawing lines between them to show how they are connected. If you arrive at the Story Web through your Elements page, you’ll need to type the character name into the search bar located in the upper right corner to bring up the web for that character. The search bar is intuitive as well, bringing up a list of potential characters that match the name you’ve begun typing into the box. Once you see the name you’re searching for, click it to open the story web.
Depending on the number of relationships your character has, you will see a full story web teeming with all manner of connections, from personal relationships to events they were involved in.
Narrowing down the results is easy. Simply head up to the Filter display by drop-down menu and choose the type of relationships you wish to view. I’ve chosen to view character relationships, which, depending on the number of characters sharing a relationship with this particular character, could still be a bit more than you need. You can further narrow your results by heading over to Filter relationship and choosing the specific type of relationship I’m seeking.
With the results narrowed down, you see a much more succinct and manageable image. From there, you can view profiles or head over to the story web for your connected elements.
Choosing Show full profile in the lower part of the character box expands the character’s profile:
Once you’ve opened the box, choose View all elements. Now you can see the relationships listed among the elements with the short description of the character.
Archivos Keeps You Organized
Meticulous organization can sometimes be a bit of a pain, especially when all you want to do is get down to the business writing and creating, but the devil is in the details and you want to keep your details straight! Whether you’re juggling a host of characters likely to rival the cast of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire or a small handful of people that don’t take much effort to keep in line, organizing everything with Archivos doesn’t just make it easier, it makes it fun.