1. Kimi-chan
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    Kimi-chan Member

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    Determining the amount of characters.

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Kimi-chan, Dec 4, 2011.

    I always have a hard time with character development. My biggest concern is the amount of characters needed. I mean I have my main characters (my twins) and their parents... and a few other supporting characters but as soon as I write the story... I end up not using half the characters I expected to.

    I have a hard time with this because I can never think of the characters I actually do need. I usually only start out with very few characters. Does anyone else have this problem too? o_O How do you usually try to imagine the characters you need?
     
  2. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    Use who your story needs. Don't use who it doesn't need. I don't try to limit myself to a number.
     
  3. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yes. When a character is needed, they show up. I don't worry about them otherwise.
     
  4. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I agree with shadowwalker. I think you're over-planning if you're creating more characters than you wind up using. Just write your story and create your characters as the need for them arises. If you're worried about trying to squeeze every character you have into your story, you're like a chef who worries that he's not using every ingredient in his pantry in a dish. The recipe might only call for six ingredients, but he wants to use twenty in it, just because he happens to have them on hand. My guess is that the dish won't turn out right.
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    ditto all of the above valid advice!
     
  6. Ettina
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    Ettina Active Member

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    Also, if you have really awesome characters that you can't fit into your current story, consider giving them their own story. I have around a dozen stories in the works, all set in the same world but involving different characters.

    I wouldn't write a character list before starting a story, or anything like that. All you need to know are the main characters and a general idea of the plot, then charge in. Supporting characters will emerge as they become relevant. About the only time I'd worry about ensuring a specific number of characters is if I was writing a school play and needed parts for every child.
     

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