1. thabear637
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    thabear637 Member

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    Changing the Gender

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by thabear637, Jul 21, 2009.

    Hi all,

    I recently made an awesome (well, to me anyways :) ) change to my character. The change was simple, yet it made the character stand out more for certain reasons and allowed a much more in depth back story on the character.

    This character is a Commander of the Army (on the good side). I originally had them as the usual male headstrong leader type...then popped in my head to change them to a female commander (which..isn't as common). This gave me tons more ideas for a backstory on them and I think overall made the character stronger.

    Has anyone else experienced this? By switching the gender making the character a bit more dynamic for your story?
     
  2. Anders Backlund
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    Anders Backlund Contributing Member

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    I don't recall ever changing the gender of one of my characters; usually those are set when I think of them and changing a man to a woman and vice versa would mess too much with the concept and the plot.

    Gender is kind of a significant thing, though, so I can see how it could be a useful exercise.
     
  3. arron89
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    arron89 Banned

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    I've never felt compelled to change the gender of one of my characters....I guess the only similar experience I've had was in a short story I wrote where the gender was (unintentionally) ambiguous until about halfway through the piece....but people seemed to like it so I didn't change much, and it worked with the themes of the text and stuff....
     
  4. Lalis
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    Lalis New Member

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    Well... No :D I've switched points of view - from the male to the female character when things got tricky, or the other way around if I felt particularly adventurous - but not the genders of the characters. They become people in my head, sort of, so it's not easy to change the gender of a person. You see?
     
  5. cybrxkhan
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    cybrxkhan Contributing Member

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    Yes, I have done that. The only instance I can think of - though a pretty important one - was in my current project, when I changed one of the antagonists from a boy to a girl. It actually made him - or her, rather - so much better an antagonist. Before, "he" was just a stereotypical jerk/bully character (think people like Draco Malfoy), and all "he" was really doing was acting like a jerk/bully just because.

    But when I changed "him" to a "her", "he" became a kind of spoiled and sort of vamp-like yet intelligent and arrogant kind of personality. Instead of some normal bully-jerk just bullying my main character out of plot convenience, for some reason it just made more sense now when the antagonist was a girl. It allowed some problems in my story to easily smooth out.

    For instance, in the story, the bully forces his younger brother to assault one of the love interests of the main character. When the bully was a boy, it didn't really make much sense - it just seemed like the bully was just being a plain jerk for no reason. But when I changed the bully to a girl, it made a lot more sense. I realized that this female bully was power-hungry (which goes along with her background, as she is a heir to an international corporation).

    Furthermore, by changing one of the main antagonists to a girl, I could allow her to contrast with one of the friends with the main character, who was also a girl. Both girls are sort of the seductress kind of personality - beautiful, vamp-like, vain, spoiled. But I could now show that the main character's friend had good qualities too, by showing her differences with this female antagonist.
     

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