1. yopo1160
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    yopo1160 New Member

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    Is this kind of character appealing?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by yopo1160, Jul 26, 2012.

    Im currently writing a story, just for my own entertainment, where the protagonist is an Asian male. He is part of a group of back up dancers, who are also asian, and the whole story starts with them goin to learn a new routine for an upcoming debut.

    Im just wondering if this type of character would make people interested enough to make them want to read a book with this type of main character. Or does race affect the character at all?
     
  2. E. C. Scrubb
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    E. C. Scrubb Active Member

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    In all honesty, I could care less about the race. The story itself doesn't seem to have a real hook in it. Some of the questions that you should be asking however, are:

    1. Why is it important for him to be Asian?

    2. What stereotypes might you be playing into unwittingly?

    3. Is there any stereotypes that the character might willfully be playing off of? That could make it a bit more interesting.

    4. Are you familiar enough with the Asian cultures? Are you going to make all of the backup dancers Japanese, or Korean, or Chinese (or one of the many other Asian cultures)? Will there be a mix? If so, do you know enough about the issues surrounding cultures and the massive tension that might exist between people of these cultures?

    If you're writing the story for your own entertainment, then don't worry about what other people want. Actually, for the most part, I wouldn't worry about it either way. Write the story you want to write, and then if it is good enough to be picked up by a publisher, then spend the time fighting out the changes with the editors.

    Good luck and I hope you enjoy your story!
     
  3. GoldenGhost
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    GoldenGhost Contributing Member

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    The above post contains my sentiments exactly.

    First, you need to determine why it's important for him to be asian, versus being European: Slovakian, French, German, Spanish, etc. The variables are endless. Is the story about his ethnicity? And not dancing? Maybe it's hard for Asians to succeed in that field (in your story at least) and it's about his struggle rising to the top.

    I could care less what the race is, considering a lot of the fantasy I've read have completely fabricated races, that also contain racial prejudices, as does the real world. It made for interesting dialogue, and in direct conflict.

    Personally, I find nothing in your description interesting. Would I read a story about back up dancers in the first place? Probably not, considering I am more prone to enjoying character driven stories that involve mystery, suspense, philosophy, mythology, action, and wonder.

    Nothing in your description even alludes to conflict, let alone addresses it existing. What could possibly be interesting about a group of dancers training for an up coming show? Where's the conflict in that? Sorry to sound harsh, but to me it sounds like a high-school journal entry.

    Is your character thinking about cheating in order to win the competition? Does he break his leg the night of, and he just happens to be the dancer the group is depending on to win? Is he involved with the coach, who is much older than him, and it borders on being an inappropriate relationship?

    These are the kinds of questions you should be asking yourself. It needs conflict. Conflicts drive characters, forcing them to rise to the challenge and over come the obstacle, leaving them transformed in some way shape or form. What obstacle is really in front of your group of dancers? Surely it's not as boring as their first time performing.

    I would brainstorm/ponder the ending of your story. And then figure out what you could put in front of your characters way as they move towards that ending.
     
  4. bsbvermont
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    bsbvermont Active Member

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    I don't think your character is unappealing, I just don't know enough yet. I agree with the previous posts about the story is what makes the character appealing or interesting. What you didn't mention was, are other backup dancers Asian, as well as many of the characters or is he the lone Asian in the story? Is this a story about a multicultural experience or his struggles to adjust to an industry that is not heavily representative of his racial background.

    I think the Asian back-up dancer thing has potential especially for many in the under twenty crowd. (There are a slew of contemporary dance movies to support that), but you do need to look at your purpose and see if race is a key factor or a secondary factor and go from there, not the other way around.
     
  5. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    It doesn't matter what your character looks like, his race, his profession or much of what he does. What matters is what he thinks and feels, which is conveyed to us through your writing. Readers will enjoy reading about characters they can connect with. The details of his race and profession are relevant insofar as they cause him to think, act, or do certain things. You, as the writer, need to tell us what those things are.

    In a good piece of writing, if your character is passionate about something, the reader will be happy to learn about it and care about it a little bit as well. What you need to tell us is *why* he's passionate about those things.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    The appeal of your character, or any character, is entirely in the quality of the writer.
     

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