1. k.little90
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    k.little90 Active Member

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    From "I hate you" to "how YOU doin'"

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by k.little90, Sep 3, 2009.

    In the story I'm currently working on, I have two MCs. My idea is to start out with them being less than friendly towards the other, with lots of snide remarks and smart*** answers. I eventually want them to become friends, and then towards the later part of the story, I would like them to become... something MORE (GASP! :D)

    Anyway, here's my problem: because I know where my character's are going to end up regarding their relationships with each other, I'm having a hard time writing them at the earlier stages in their development. I've found it's really hard for me to have them be mean to each other, and than respect each other, and so on and so forth; basically, I have no BUILD UP!

    Here's the question: Do any of you all have any ideas on how I can fix this?

    You would pretty much rule my universe if you did.....:rolleyes:
     
  2. Kitbug
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    Kitbug Contributing Member

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    Well, this might not work for you, but I for one have fun writing characters who are smartly rude to each other. So not things like "you idiot" and stuff, but like you said make them snide. Very snide. The more so the better. I'd try to practice writing like this in just some random conversation you invent for the purpose of practicing. See if it's fun. I find things like this fun. It'll help a lot if you can get into the scene and envision yourself as an onlooker who would be amused by the wit of the comments. Best of luck, and if I think of anything else I'll let you know.
     
  3. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    How about an event that brings them closer together? Basically, I'm thinking along the lines of a common conflict. Perhaps they're both stuck in an elevator and get to know each other, etc.
     
  4. k.little90
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    k.little90 Active Member

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    Yeah that's a good idea! That actually ties in really well with the part I'm at right now. I can easily turn this chapter into a "getting to know you" chapter. Super!

    But do you have any advice about how to seperate the different levels of attraction? From Hate, to tolerance, to love? I feel like even when my Mcs hate each other there is some awkward hate passion going on lol
     
  5. cinnim0ngirl
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    cinnim0ngirl Member

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    Something similar happened to me in real life. I worked with this guy who was in my opinion an a-hole. I over heard him saying "Kristi this and Kristi that." If I were talking to others and gave an opinion he would give an opposite opinion, or word so I was left wondering- did he just insult me? lol. Well I was forced to work alone with him one day and almost quit to avoid it. But I decided instead to confront him (something I used to not be able to do.) Anyway I was like WTF Buddy? Well I felt really stupid when I learned his wife's name was Christy and had been venting about her the whole time.

    Turned out he liked me because I would give snippy responses back to him, he thought I was "spunky" lol. He is now one of my best friends but boy did I want to just dot him in the eye for awhile.

    It was funny that all that irritation was a waste of time, but it makes for a funny story. For me anyway :)
     
  6. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    You do that with the plot. Various events that move the characters from hate, then tolerance, then finally love. Think of Belle's feelings for the Beast in the Beauty and the Beast, or Elizabeth & Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.
     
  7. DragonGrim
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    DragonGrim Contributing Member

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    Something I’ve noticed in a lot of plot lines like this is that something has to drive the tension between the characters. Since the characters should be likable, they should be good people, not just cursing at each other for no reason.

    Some trouble maker can say “Hey, you know what he said about you?” then she listens into a conversation, and hears him say bad things about her, but it is actually someone else he was talking about. Anyway, there are a hundred ways to do it, but make sure each has a reason to hate the other. Then it will be easier to write the verbal abuse.
     
  8. Syne
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    Syne Member

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    Both characters are going to have ambitions, skills, and goals. A thing that can really bring the two of them closer together is finding out they some of those in common. Alternatively, certain personality traits or skills one has might be highly valued by the other.

    After a sequence of such events, wherein one of the characters finds positive qualities in the other, friendship might seem more natural. These events my occur accidentally, such as when one of the characters seen the other act outside his presence. Or they might be more direct.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Ever meet two stubborn people who can't stand each other because they are so alike? But then sometimes they do find common ground, something they actually agree upon.
     
  10. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Dave has taken the words right off of my keyboard. Though we rarely admit it, often the things that annoy and bother us the most about others are the things which we have in common.

    Mirrors can be problematic to the ego. :rolleyes:
     
  11. Kitbug
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    Kitbug Contributing Member

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    To the OP, Wreybies post reminded me of something that might help you. It's not hate, but as a real life experience, I have a friend who reminds me of me. I don't always think this is a good thing, because I can be stubborn to the point of stupidity, among other things. He's just like me. Whenever we get into a fight about anything, it feels like I'm looking in a mirror and that just infuriates me more sometimes, because it's like I'm arguing with all the things about myself that bother me, but I can't do anything about that. You could try having your characters face a similar problem, but keep in mind like Wreybies and Cogito said, people don't usually admit this--not for a long time anyway.
     
  12. Gammer
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    Gammer Active Member

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    A good way to that I think is to have Character A hate a certain trait or certain habit that Character B does. Then after the "Getting to know you" chapter that very same trait doesn't bug Character A as much since he/she understands why character B does those things, and basically go from there.

    Hope that helps. Good luck :)
     
  13. HorusEye
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    HorusEye Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'd say be careful of the middle stage, as you mention it - tolerance. It could easily become a low point because there's no friction or spark in tolerance. Have them feel strongly about eachother all along, and if necessary, make the swap from hate to love a drastic one. It does work.

    "I hate you.."
    "No, I hate you!"
    *Big kiss*

    Classic 50's movie. Watch some of those ;)
     
  14. ManhattanMss
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    ManhattanMss Contributing Member

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    The problem (to my eye) looks like you've got a pretty ordinary, predictable progression of a relationship here. The key to fixing that is to have that development simply take a back seat to whatever the story is about. Show how these two characters interact and how their relationship parallels or progresses or supports the storyline in some relevant way. Essentially with a relationship that begins, progresses, changes, and works, you have no "BUILD UP!" because you have no real story. The story is not the relationship so much as the reason why the relationship takes the turns that it does.

    That's JMO, of course.
     
  15. The Freshmaker
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    The Freshmaker <insert obscure pop culture reference> Contributor

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    Do you have a reason for them not liking each other, other than just their personalities? I've found, in the past, that adverse circumstances when meeting someone have caused me to have a negative opinion of that person. Not necessarily because of them, but maybe because they or I happened to be in a bad mood, or some such circumstance. Later, though, I found out that they were actually really cool.

    When I was younger and went to church, there was a boy in my Sunday school class. We got into this big argument about music because he had mentioned a band that I thought was horrible. We disliked each other for a long time, until we were both approached by our pastor to organize youth group events. We got to be very close friends, and after a couple years, he became my first boyfriend.

    Is this relationship the focus of your plot, or is it a subplot?
     
  16. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    This post shows exactly why you're having a problem. Above is who (boy/girl), why/the conflict (argument about a band), how/moved from dislike to close friends (organized youth group events).

    If I were you, I'd start all over again and this time think of a conflict first and not about the fact that you want to go from hate to like to love. The conflict is something you can build a story from. So who are your characters (personalities, situation, age, etc.) and what has caused them or gives them cause to be hostile to one another ("the conflict"). Just work on that part first, and try to be imaginative and not use story lines from books or movies, but instead just wonder to yourself: what if such & such happened, and how would the guy and the girl react, or what if the guy did this and ...

    Hope I made sense. :)
     
  17. Atari
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    Atari Active Member

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    First: Why do they dislike each other at the beginning.
    Generally, if you hate someone, either you hate what that person stands for, something that person did or said, or a mere first impression.

    If you establish an exact reason for the hate (even if it's just, "I don't like him," which doesn't seem like a very good start, considering that they have to like each other, later, and people you 'just don't like' generally stay people that you just don't like) then you can find ways around them, later on.
     
  18. k.little90
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    k.little90 Active Member

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    I've decided I want to make the reason for the tention a fight over the job position that my girl MC is filling. My boy MC will feel slighted because he was passed over for it, so upon first meeting her he will not like her for that reason.

    Later on in the first chapter, I'm going to have my guy MC's boss "Volunteer" him to be my girl's assistant, which will just add to the embarrassment and anger. I'm hoping that will do the trick for atleast a couple of chapters, until my hotheaded guy MC decides its not the end of the world. What do you guys think?

    And to answer your question, Freshmaker, its a subplot... but its still a very very large part of the main plot.
     
  19. AmandaC
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    AmandaC Member

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    Well if the two characters didn't get along maybe something should happen to change it. Maybe they spend some time apart (one goes to Guam for a year to visit their...whatever, you get the point) and when they meet again they start to get to know each other and realize that they were wrong before. Or maybe fate throws them a wicked curve ball and they're stuck together for some reason.

    My advice is this: This is a common theme in love stories. (Pride and Prejudice? Love it.) So you need to find a way to make it different and to make it yours.

    Go nuts.
     
  20. Kio
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    Kio Contributing Member

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    This is exactly what I was thinking. This build up thing in the romance genre is so overused. Maybe you can try to make it a little different? I can't think of any suggestions, considering that romance is hardly my favourite genre unless it is tastefully integrated with a story.

    However, if you're going to keep it with the build up, you ought to make the plot really interesting. Or you can cheat and use vampires to capture the crazy tween audience (no, I'm joking, please don't do that). Good luck. I hope I was of some assistance.
     
  21. Kirby
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    Kirby New Member

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    I was watching some tv show yesterday, the main character in there was that girl from Friends, the sister of Ross. She and her neighbor supposedly didn't get along because of she thought he liked her and he didn't want to admit it. Something like that.

    Any movies come to mind guys?

    ~Kirby

    I just thought of somethng. Get on MSN chat thing and do a back and forth simulation. Try to be snide.

    Do yall guys have a dictionary in here. I was going to look up snide.

    ~Kirby
     

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