Character Creation

SDNess

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Well I've learned a lot about myself as a writer this semester. I really need to learn how to develop and construct a realistic, inviting character. Any advice?
 

Brian G Turner

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The plot depends upon character plot with in turn depends upon character.

So, in a nutshell, characters make the story.

However, it depends upon what actual character plot you are dealing with as to what sort of character is required. To decide that, then ask what the character needs to achieve to be fulfilled in the book? Vengeance? Acceptance? Political power? A full body massage by a beatiful goddess? That decides something of your character - each of the achievements above would generally requier completely different characters/personalities.
 

bregorzloth

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I always find that the most potent way of creating a character is to give them one (or both) of these two things:

+ A powerful need, want or goal;
+ Something they desperately wish to avoid.

My way of writing involves creating the characters before I have any real idea of the plot. Character creation first allows possible plot threads and ideas to evolve directly out of the needs of the characters--which, if you think about it, is how it should be. Plot revolves around characters.

Once you've figured out the big question, you can move onto other things. These may be necessities for that particular character (eg. must be of a particular age, must be able to do certain things), or they may be more general.

For more information, I highly recommend Holly Lisle's articles, located at: http://hollylisle.com/fm/
 

Jayaprakash Satyamurthy

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Thanks for the link, and your own insight, bregorzloth.

I personally have tended to flesh out a plot outline and then cast about trying to play it out with believable characters. However this time, I have a broad plot outline - a central cause for conflict and an equally broad idea of my 'world'. RIght now I'm allowing the characters to come to life - it's a little hard to explain exactly where they are coming from - and I find that, as I learn more about them fleshing out the plot becomes easier. So I'd have to agree that the characters have to drive the plot.
 

sea_plunder

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i'm not great at creating charechters or nothing but the way i do it drawing my charechter and knowing as much as i can about him/her. i try to put the charechter in to different situations before i start writing so i feel like i know the charechter. I don't know if that is the best way but compared with all the other advice your charechter creation will probably get better. :)
 

Crimson Ink

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Jun 12, 2004
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I always write a short story mainly about my character first. Most of my characters have their own story. I think a character with a complicated or mysterious personality works well e.g: They are good but occasionally turn a bit bad (or the other way around). One of my character is an Angel-type being, but is slightly tainted and naughty.

Or you can base your character on a person you know. I based the tainted bit of the Angel on some of my ecperiences and the naughtyness on one of my friends.
I also based an eccentric old man on my dad :D

Hope that helps :)
xx
 

Hypes

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Whatever you do, stay away from the trite clichès such as the child whose parents were assassinated by the evil overlord, etc.
 

Esioul

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One thing I do, is watch real people a lot, and analyse how they act and abse characters on them. I sometimes change an aspect or two of them to make them more unique or weird or less like the real person.
 

Brian G Turner

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Hypes said:
Whatever you do, stay away from the trite clichès such as the child whose parents were assassinated by the evil overlord, etc.
Heh, I think it's Joseph Campbell who takes eom blame for that - certainly Star Wars. :)

But it can be well done - especially when you have Oliver Stone and a film called "Conan the Barbarian". :D
 

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