1. Rumwriter

    Rumwriter Active Member

    May 11, 2011
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    How to make a character "just go with it"

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Rumwriter, Jun 15, 2011.

    So my book is a sort of historical fantasy and my main character is just your typical everyday person, but he finds himself suddenly in situations that are fantastical, with dragons, and magic, and all that sort of stuff.

    What I want to convey is that my character just sort of accepts these things even though they are so clearly something that one could not simply accept. As in, if you were to come home one day and a dog started talking to you and asked you where the nearest post office was you'd probably flip out, but I want my main character to have a persona where he'd just be like "Oh! just down the street and take a left." The problem is that when I try to make my character just accept these strange situations it tends to remove some of the excitement I want to build up, and it also makes him seem like a boring character. Instead I want it to almost be like a comic relief. Almost.

    Think Tony Shalhoub's character in Galaxy Quest for those of you who have seen it. Any ideas??

    Ah! I think I should say that I want my character to be so open minded that he is just willing to accept that although these are strange situations, they must be possible since they are happening. that might be a good way to describe it...idk. HELP
  2. SteamWolf

    SteamWolf Senior Member

    May 29, 2011
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    It's been said many times through history that the greatest heroics and the most vile atrocities are done by very ordinary people thrust into extraordinary situations.

    Some people cope with change better than others of course, but you'd be amazed at how adaptable human beings are.

    I expect the reaction would progress through the usual stages such as with grief; denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

    In a world-changing situation probably less bargaining and more relapsing of denial, anger or simple bemusement/self doubt.
  3. cruciFICTION

    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

    May 18, 2011
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    Brisbane, Australia
    @Steamwolf: your post really isn't very valid. You're kind of ignoring the OP's point. The character isn't actually seeing any change. They're just accepting something in their stride as though it was always like that.

    Really, there's a lot of ways you could do it. If you start it out with small "changes" that he just takes on, that'd be good, then you progress to bigger stuff, like walking buildings and stuff.

    I recommend you just write him the way you said: the kind of guy who'd just say, "Oh, down the street and take a left." There's no need for massive explanations, but if you progress it along a little bit, readers will be less likely to say, "What? Wait... what!?" You will very likely need to show someone else looking at him weirdly in a situation like that, like if they see the talking dog and they kind of stumble back in surprise, you know?

    He'd very likely have some mental faculties broken down to accept some stuff like that, though.

    Good luck.

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