1. crystalpayne
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    crystalpayne New Member

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    Falling in and Out of Love with your Characters?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by crystalpayne, Mar 26, 2013.

    Now remember before I decided to even try writing, I was just a normal girl. That enjoyed the simple things in life!

    Is it even possible to fall in and out of love with your characters, to hate some of them?


    When I created these characters I didn’t realize that I would become attached to them. I didn’t know I would get mad at them. I couldn’t comprehend why I was screaming at my monitor at them. Ok, the last one didn’t happen! But I sure thought about it!

    Who would have thought I would be going on this very emotional rollercoaster with them. That is clearly not what I signed up for! I am just trying to write a book.

    When they were happy or sad so was I! My husband could not think it was normal to watch me at the computer laughing and blushing like a little school girl.
    Or how about when he called me one day when I was in the middle of writing a chapter and I was crying my eyes out! It went something like this.

    “Hello!” sniff sniff
    “Baby, is everything ok? What is wrong, what happened?”

    I am sure my husband thought someone had died, or maybe I fell down and hurt myself. At this point something is wrong with his wife and he is worried!
    “It’s this damn book it’s so overwhelming, I am just sad ok?” I said still crying and a little bit irritated.

    So put yourself in my poor husband’s shoes for a moment, how is he supposed to comfort his wife that is 2 steps away from falling off the cliff of CRAZY!!

    Option 1-Send flowers
    Option 2-Buy me some chocolates, because chocolates make everything better
    Option 3- Or say, “Hey baby, I am about to walk into a meeting can I give you a call back?”

    Like a smart man he chose option 3 and let me have my little melt down. I am sure he was hoping by the time he got home I would have finished that chapter, then I would cook dinner and not force the poor man to eat left overs again.

    Now before everyone starts having a Pity Party for him, he did benefit from the exciting chapters I wrote, if you know what I mean. I am pretty sure the good outweighs the bad.

    I am sure this behavior is normal and I don’t need to be committed. Or is it?
     
  2. Sanjuricus
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    Sanjuricus Active Member

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    I play good old pen and paper RPGs every weekend with friends and I get very attached to characters. It's difficult not to and even more so when writing so no, you're not a loon, you don't need committing to an asylum.
    In one scene in my book, one of the main characters performs an act of kindness that still brings tears to my eyes when I read or edit it! Maybe you're just the kind of person who wears her emotions very close to the surface? :)

    As for your husbands reply, I can relate to that. You women are a mystery to us at the best of times!!!
     
  3. iolair
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    iolair Active Member

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    I think you should absolutely have an emotional reaction to your characters. I don't think it's possible to write characters we expect readers to become involved with, without being involved ourselves. If I finish writing an argument and don't feel my pulse and blood pressure up a bit, I doubt I've done it justice.
     
  4. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I think you're being just a *little* melodramatic over something that basically happens to everyone who writes.

    And you're still a normal girl - no need to put it in the past tense. Writing a book doesn't make you insane. It's a difficult and rewarding challenge, but that's about it really.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I had to chuckle at this original post. Yes, I know exactly where you're coming from. And it's a good place. If you care a lot about your characters, that will emerge in your writing. Hopefully it will mean your readers will care a lot as well. As to Melodrama. Well, I'm on a Melodrama Hunt through my own manuscript at the moment, so I know where too much of that can lead! I don't think I've ever been in tears over my characters, but I do know I've had to get up and walk away from the computer a few times, when I was putting them through a particularly hard time! Good luck, and continue to enjoy the experience. Leftovers? Well, they can be as good as the first time around ...or not...
     
  6. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    If the melodrama was turned down a notch (or two) this could've been a decent little short story ;)
     
  7. crystalpayne
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    crystalpayne New Member

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    Thank you very much!
     
  8. Wild Knight
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    Wild Knight Active Member

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    Yeah. I am very emotionally attached to my characters. It would be impossible for me to write them if I didn't feel some sort of emotional attachment to them. I have never screamed at them, true, but... I do have this peculiar habit of laughing at something they say, or something they do... and then it's awkward explaining to anyone why I'm laughing. I just don't feel like they'd understand even if I told them.
    I HAVE, however, cried more than a couple of times during some RPs... :redface: and then I'd be picked on afterwards. And I'm not even a big baby, but I HAVE created moments where I'd start crying...
     
  9. T.Trian
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    T.Trian Overly Pompous Bastard Staff Supporter Contributor

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    This thread just reminds me of how lucky I am to have a writer as a wife: we both share the joys and miseries of our characters and often end up laughing when we put them through something crazy. I don't think either of us has ever cried over them although I do feel sad and melancholy if a good character dies or when we finish a book. The latter case is especially hard if it's been a series: at the end of a trilogy we wrote I had a hard time letting go of one of my characters who had been there since the first book. Oh well, it only makes editing and rewriting that much more enjoyable, like visiting an old friend. What? Me? Pompous? I never!
     
  10. Simmy1993
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    Simmy1993 Member

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    More times than not I fall in love with a single character and give them all the breaks, as my writing tends to include upwards of 10 or so characters at one time it's often the case that I wander from one to the other. It's a terrible vice as it sometimes causes silly plotlines, but it's human nature to show favour to one thing over another!
     
  11. doghouse
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    doghouse Member

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    I'm utterly indifferent to characters I write.

    Be a bastard to them, it makes for a better story. Push them hard, see how they handle stuff; what they are made off.

    IMO, being emotionally attached will only hurt the stories potential. Although, I'm not suggesting it's wrong to have an emotional attachment -- it proves that writing is a powerful tool. :)
     
  12. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    As I stated in a topic earlier, one of my characters is a racist whom I hate (or dislike)

    Another is a struggling writer who is happily married, I love her

    I could go on but you get the gist, I change how I feel about my characters depending on the current story. I absolutely love some of the decisions and hate some others but all of my characters are my creation and I love them all
     
  13. ChrystinaTrulove-Reyes
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    ChrystinaTrulove-Reyes Member

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    I think that getting involved with characters is only natural. It is kinda like having a pet. Maybe a dog. You care for them, try to guide them, but sometimes they have a mind of their own and bark at the neighbor for the seventy-fifth time in the last two hours. And they do things that make you sit back and wonder what happened to make them do that. Personally, they should be real to us. The more that we care about them, the more likely that our readers will care. The problem lies in when one of the character has to do something you don't want them to, or it is their time to leave the story permanently. Be aware of your emotions, but don't let them control your story's needs.

    Cat
     
  14. ms627
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    ms627 Member

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    This guy.

    I'm similar. I do normally develop a favorite, and that is my MC, but I don't give him/her "breaks." I might make him/her a bit more of a bamf at some points, but he's/she's doomed just like the rest of them. :)

    I bet your characters are more relatable than mine though because you get that emotional attachment!
     

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