Okay, I have been reading book reviews/critiques and have come to some degree of understanding, I took notes and came up with my own conclusion about how a protagonist should/needs to be. I hope others can help me find other things that need to be added and I shall add them as bullet points for others to benefit from them. I merely wanted to share my ideas with you guys, so please keep this thread friendly. I have only used one source for my conclusion: Destiny unfulfilled by Jim Adam, I did not paraphrase or copy from him, his critique is Harry Potter exclusive, mine is general ideas. What is a Protagonist? We all know them as the character that has the story events revolving around them. However, there are things that qualify as static characteristics that most if not all protagonists should have. Below are some of these characteristics that can be used as a guidance to flesh the character: 1. They are supposed to be the very main character in the story, they aren’t the smartest donkey in the world but they shouldn’t have brains equivalent to that of a squirrel. It would be a shame to try and promote other character’s genius brains on the expense of your protagonist; it would also be a shame if they are so clueless they don’t even realize they are clueless. 2. The protagonist is supposed to be the main focus of the story, this means that they should undergo a character development during the course of the story events. If your protagonist was weak at the beginning then they shouldn’t remain weak until the end. This doesn’t mean that your character has to become a better creature. For all we know, people don’t always become better, sometimes they become worse but that is still a character development. Try to make them change, backwards or forwards is not the issue as long as they don’t remain static. 3. They should live up to their reputation or what is expected from them. This means that if your protagonist was ‘the chosen one’ then they should live up to that title, grow in strength and finally conquer the Dark Lord with wits and nothing else. If they were a mass murderer then they should commit crimes that reflect this. If they were a prissy princess then they are unlikely to go marching into a war. Just make your protagonist what they are supposed to be, neither below nor above it. 4. They are supposed to feel, suffer from their actions and regret wrong choices or the opposite, depending on their personality. If your character is a good person then good people can’t kill by mistake and then not regret it. They can’t cause harm to others without feeling guilt. They can’t make a wrong choice and not wish they haven’t. If they are bad people, then they have to enjoy the wrong they are doing or be angry with the world or whatever. The key is to never allow your protagonist to forget things he had done whether good or bad, they should not go through their life, doing things without thinking about them or feeling for them. They are human and not a robot. 5. Their current actions/personality has to have a reason for being the way it is. Are they angry? Why, what happened in their past to make them like that or what is happening in their present to push them to this? If they are sad then why? If they are happy then why? We all have our personalities shaped from the past we experienced or the present we have or the future we are looking for or all three together. Your protagonist is the same, they are human and they are like you, their experiences shape their personality. Their ways of thinking shape their personality. 6. If some side-kick characters are willing to help your protagonist then they have to deserve it or this side-kick belly button has to have a motive for this help. In life, we either help people because we care about them or because we have an exchange help-receive relationship or because we are helping so we can get something in return or to make them do something for us in the future. These side-kicks should be the same; they shouldn’t offer help just so your protagonist can get out of a problem which their brains are too small to solve alone. 7. Never let your protagonist be under graded in a time of trouble. Unless they are a helpless princess who needs her knight to protect her. They should be able to stand on their own, as I said before. Sure, they can receive help from others or work with others in a team but they shouldn’t be the lost-in-lala-lands character. They need to know what’s going on and take actions –good or bad- to react to the situation they are in. Hope this is of some help to others.