Anything pertaining to developing the details associated with characters in your writing.

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5
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2answers
186 views

How to do research to write characters from a different culture?

Let's say I'm French and I'd like to write a Korean character. How can I build their personality traits, values, etc. in a realist way? I'm afraid to end up with a character only superficially ...
4
votes
9answers
577 views

Why should I try to create realistic fantasy characters?

One use for fantasy is wish-fulfillment. With that in mind, why is there a need for realism in creating a character in a fantasy novel?
4
votes
5answers
170 views

Can the protagonist lose his strength without losing the reader?

In studying writing, I've learned that you need to give your protagonist something - usually a quality - that makes the reader want him to win. Without this quality, the reader doesn't care what ...
4
votes
6answers
621 views

Tips for adding more personality to characters?

Often I read a new book only to find that the characters are flat, boring, and lacking in personality. Sometimes I even find that in my own characters, and when that happens I usually just remove it. ...
4
votes
6answers
4k views

How do you make your characters likable?

Though I disagree that characters need to be likeable for a story to be good, I certainly do not think it hurts - nice people in stories serve as redeeming factors and give the occasional "tingle down ...
4
votes
4answers
405 views

Can a character arc “overshoot” and then revert?

Most stories have a protagonist that undergoes a change of at least one character trait from Type A to Type B. For instance, a character might go from being timid in the beginning to assertive or ...
4
votes
3answers
488 views

How to make a dumb decision as a character and still not let the reader to think same about him

My character is a police detective. But not the best one. I'm trying to stay away from idealizations in this book. Characters will make normal, human, mistakes; they'll change their minds and be more ...
4
votes
3answers
227 views

Are there times when delayed character development is acceptable in fiction?

In my screenplay, I have my female protagonist wear Prada, and perhaps drop other hints of her character, but not act like Miranda Priestly for the first two acts, until she gets a promotion at the ...
4
votes
3answers
218 views

Adding more characters as the story moves forwards

I'm 20 and have been writing a lot of fiction since I was 11, and there is a story that I keep rewriting as I get older and learn more about writing and storytelling. Strangely I haven't done that ...
4
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5answers
233 views

How to write a good prison scene

I'm attempting to write one or two chapters with one of my main characters in a jail cell. It's important to the character development that he is isolated for an extended period of time, antagonized ...
4
votes
3answers
250 views

Will changing a protagonist into an antagonist alienate readers?

It's really hard for me to write questions here without giving a complete info dump on my story. Every time I start to explain my problem, I find myself writing an entire synopsis. This is my third ...
4
votes
2answers
593 views

What methods does Rowling use to establish Dumbledore as being wise and trustworthy?

In the Harry Potter series, Dumbledore seems to represent ultimate wisdom and authority. Harry (and the readers with him) hold him in awe; many times throughout the series Harry willingly accepts and ...
4
votes
4answers
137 views

Forming The Perfect Inspirational Character

I would like to know what cues I can use to make a character inspirational. What are some of the traits of characters like Albus Dumbledore, Peeta Melark or Gandalf, that are quoted often in popular ...
3
votes
7answers
2k views

Main male character description

I've been asked to write a story as an assignment. It should have as the main male character an unusually smart, clever, insightful and thoughtful guy who is somewhat reserved and mysterious. The ...
3
votes
3answers
311 views

How to highlight a main character among several points of view?

After some time outlining quite a complex story, I came to the conclusion I need more than one point of view to tell it all. However, I need to have one of those points of view's character as the ...
3
votes
4answers
332 views

Making characters multidimensional and unique. What can i do?

I'm writing a sci-fi/fantasy story and i have quite a number of characters that i want to deploy in the story. However, these characters should each have their own agendas in life, their own internal ...
3
votes
5answers
129 views

How linear should I be in writing my story?

This my most serious writing endeavor ever. I've gotten much farther than I've dreamed of getting. So far, I've been chugging along writing everything in the order that I imagine it being written in ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

How to depict Australian characters

In my working novel, a character encounters an Aussie. Having nigh-zero knowledge of how to make dialogues in an Australian accent, I just opted to describe that he talks without any hints of an ...
3
votes
7answers
404 views

How do you effectively develop a plot when you have a proper back story?

I'm writing a sci-fi/fantasy story, which is arguably not yet a novel, and has general similarities with most fantasy stories. I have a back story set and a fairly good idea on how the story is ...
3
votes
5answers
261 views

How would a knight act around a princess?

In my current book, the main character is a knight and in one of the beginning scenes, he interacts with the princess. He's intimidated because of who she is (royalty) and acts very formal around her ...
3
votes
5answers
691 views

How to make a intellectually disabled character believable?

I want to use a 12yo girl with down syndrome as main character. Trisomy 21 people has a low IQ, normally around 50, at least according to Wikipedia. I've known a few people with such syndrome over ...
3
votes
2answers
229 views

How to write about an emotion you never experienced?

Is it possible for a writer to describe realistically a never felt emotion? For example I have never experienced faith, or being truly in love. I've never physically hurt anyone and have no idea of ...
3
votes
5answers
211 views

How do I demonstrate ideological differences between characters who are politically not too different?

I'm currently writing a novel, in which two characters who are old friends are having an argument. I'm writing the argument to establish who the characters are and what their values are (the argument ...
3
votes
2answers
61 views

Realistically Writing newly-deaf characters

I am not deaf and nobody I know is, yet I am curious how an author goes about writing in a newly-deaf character's POV when they aren't deaf themselves.
3
votes
4answers
107 views

Ways to make a character snap?

I've approached a point in my story wherein one of my characters has just been broken out of a short stretch in prison (around a week). Seconds before being captured, he watched a good friend of his ...
3
votes
3answers
146 views

What's the difference between a 1-, 2- or 3-dimensional character?

The terms are bandied around quite often to describe fictional characters, generally in order to help describe how developed a character is in terms of personality and backstory. However, are there ...
3
votes
2answers
164 views

Where do you start researching something you know nothing about?

I have a character with a little back-story I'd like to dribble in here and there as we go. I have something sort of specific in mind, and it makes sense for the character, but it doesn't seem like ...
3
votes
2answers
181 views

Should I highlight or downplay a character's quirk to make her seem more odd?

In a visual novel my friend and I are writing, I created a female character who is obsessed with making furniture out of (living) people. Yeah, it's weird, but everyone in the story has their quirks. ...
3
votes
3answers
98 views

How do you force a turning point in a narrative that is supposed to be precisely about the lack of such devices?

Please, before flagging this question as subjective or generic, take a moment to read it through. IMO this is a valid, specific question, albeit a bit complex. To try and unpack the admittedly ...
3
votes
7answers
145 views

Forming a strong relationship between 2 characters

How can one organically develop a strong relationship (father-son, to be precise) between 2 strangers over the course of a novel without making it seem contrived?
3
votes
1answer
78 views

How detailed should the description of the POV character be?

I have close to no experience of writing, but I have an idea that I would like to make into a short story (if for nothing else, for the sake of the exercise). It is a fantasy story seen from one of ...
3
votes
2answers
153 views

Does this snippet meander too much?

This is a sequel to Is this excerpt's style too matter-of-fact?. Rather than rewrite the same snippet, I decided to write a second, adjacent snippet. I attempted to add scenes demonstrating each ...
3
votes
2answers
180 views

How Can I Effectively Develop Fictional Characters

So, I'm trying my own attempt at writing and I keep having trouble with developing my characters. Are there any effective methods of developing fictional characters? It can just be a small idea or ...
3
votes
3answers
294 views

Books on character development

Are there any good books to learn about character development for mystery/thriller genre fiction? For example, when to introduce the character(s), how much background info to give about each character,...
3
votes
1answer
237 views

Flashback or dream as a means of hinting at more going on than meets the eye

I plan to use a dream or flashback as a way to show the reader the story has more going on behind the scenes. As well to sprinkle in a little of my main characters back-story. I haven't written it ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

Is protagonist identification/empathy influenced by the reader's gender?

I had a discussion with someone who claimed she'd once read (though she couldn't remember the source) that men can identify and empathize with male as well as female protagonists, while women identify ...
3
votes
5answers
124 views

What aspects of written dialogue are important when giving characters a unique voice?

I have a project that I am working on in which I need to write quite a few fictional informal email correspondences between pairs of characters. I am not using these characters in any other context. ...
2
votes
7answers
121 views

Should a main character be like the reader, or better than him?

As I was reading different stories, I came to wonder about what is better for the reader to identify with the character. Indeed, it is often unclear whether the MC (main character) is like the reader ...
2
votes
4answers
145 views

When a character tells a long story, is it always an info dump?

I have two characters who don't get along and are sniping at each other from the moment they meet in the book. Throughout the story, they keep ramping it up. At a certain point, one character is still ...
2
votes
5answers
401 views

Do all main characters require equal development?

I have been doing some work on character development for my novel. I found that though I can write pages about the main character, other characters, who have an important role and will be there for ...
2
votes
2answers
459 views

Is character driven fiction more successful than plot driven fiction?

I have heard that editors and publishers prefer character driven fiction, where the characters grow and learn, rather than plot driven ones. Is there any truth to this? Edit: In response to comments: ...
2
votes
4answers
137 views

How do I write from a non-person point of view?

I am writing a novel with an ensemble cast. Each chapter is told from a different person's point of view. Some of the chapters are about a non-sentient machine that communicates with the human ...
2
votes
4answers
258 views

Term for stereotype stories

Is there any term to describe stories where the "evil" characters are extremely evil, and the good characters are extremely good?
2
votes
1answer
171 views

I cannot determine my Protagonist's work-life. Any help?

My protagonist works in a pharma company and I really don't have a clue about how they work, what kind of a life they live and all. It is required for the plot to make him work in a company which ...
2
votes
5answers
171 views

Is it a good idea to make the protagonist pull themselves together

Is it a good idea, to make the protagonist pull themselves together at a point in a work of fiction. I've been writing a novel, and for practically the entire first half the main protagonist has been ...
2
votes
4answers
111 views

Making modern references

I'm working on a modern fiction drama in an urban setting. I'm trying to be real in terms of conversation threads--music, movies, drugs, etc. Here's my problem: I've never done a realistic modern ...
2
votes
3answers
207 views

How much character description is considered necessary in a “plot driven” story?"

Some stories begin with a rather full description of say, the main character. Here is a clip from Hello Dolly that describes in (for me) excruciating detail not only about what she does (matchmaking) ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Petty Character

As a part of one assignment, I need to create of a character who is petty. His pettiness causes him (or her) conflicts with other characters around him (or her). I am not quite familiar with this ...
2
votes
5answers
62 views

First person POV “mom:” vs. “mother”

This may seem like a duplicate of Changing the way one addresses a character in a dialogue to create variation, but it the answers there did not apply. My question is: When writing in the first ...
2
votes
3answers
166 views

Intervening Characters in fiction

I have been finding it hard to find info on a certain character archetype. Character traits: has very little investment into the central plot and thus plays both pro and antagonistic roles ...