What’s your sign? Using the Zodiac When Writing

I think most writers will agree knowing your characters even better than some of the people you see in everyday life is important for the believability of those characters. Jotting down every little quirk, pet peeve, nuance and other personal details about your protagonist during the planning stage of your novel can be used to your advantage. I even decide when my characters were born. Knowing your characters birth date helps to shape some of their personality traits if you use the zodiac to your advantage.

I figure for demonstrative purposes I will use some well known characters as examples since the world has not yet met mine.

Harry PotterJ.K. Rowling was kind enough to let us know that his birthday is July 31st (it is also her birthday). Which makes him a Leo. Leos are natural leaders.

Leo Tend to be:

Generous and warmhearted
Creative and enthusiastic
Broad-minded and expansive
Faithful and loving

Can be:

Pompous and patronizing
Bossy and interfering
Dogmatic and intolerant

Hermione Granger: September 19th birthday makes her a Virgo. Virgos are academics.

Virgo Tend to be:

Modest and shy
Meticulous and reliable
Practical and diligent
Intelligent and analytical

Can be:

Fussy and a worrier
Overcritical and harsh
Perfectionist and conservative

Ron Weasley: March 1st birthday makes him a Pisces they are everyone’s friend.

Pisces Tend to be:

Imaginative and sensitive
Compassionate and kind
Selfless and unworldly
Intuitive and sympathetic

Can be:

Escapist and idealistic
Secretive and vague
Weak-willed and easily led

Severus Snape: His birthday is reported to be January 9th making him a Capricorn.

Lord Voldemort: Born December 31st also making him a Capricorn.

Capricorn Tend to be:

Practical and prudent
Ambitious and disciplined
Patient and careful
Humorous and reserved

Can be:

Pessimistic and fatalistic
Miserly and grudging
Over conventional and rigid

Here is the site where I got my traits from:




And if you don’t want to use the zodiac for characterisation there is also all the myths and legends that go with each sign to use as potential inspiration for new stories.

How do you develop your character’s personality? Have you ever used the zodiac to flesh out your story or to develop your characters?




About Billie Jo Schinnerer

Born and raised on the edge of the Helderberg Escarpment in eastern New York. Formerly a primary and middle school teacher. Moved to the North West area of England in 2003. Now a mother of three and a wannabe author.
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10 Responses to What’s your sign? Using the Zodiac When Writing

  1. Selena says:

    Excellent post!! I have used the zodiac for fleshing out characters. Numerology works too!

    • I have a huge book called The Secret Language of Birthdays: Personology Profiles for Each Day of the Year which is fabulous! It breaks down traits of people not just by their sign but by the day they were born as well. I have tried numerology too. You will also be glad to know I have finally started using some tarot as per your recommendation.

  2. Thank you and thanks for popping by and commenting too!

  3. I haven’t tried this, Billie Jo. But I want to now!

    • Let me know how you make out if you do try it. I find it fabulous for those times when I wonder if the character would act a certain way or not. I just go check out what their zodiac traits are from the various sites and books out there and then make a decision based on that.

  4. I have used the Zodiac to characterize some of my characters, but perhaps not as much as I should, since, as it appears from the JK Rowling roll call posted above, it adds a depth to the characters that is very descriptive. I have also used a lesser known but powerful description of people by their spiritual or psychic gifts, as described in courses provided by <a href="http://www.alcworld.com/"Americana Leadership College, Inc. I have found that these tools make character-building easier and more vivid.

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