1. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    Two of the Same Characters?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Cacian, Nov 16, 2011.

    I am thinking of introducing two characters of the same in one story.
    for example
    instead fo having an MC /a main character I would have too antagonists say in confrontation/conflict situation with each other whihc will end up changing them character wise in the end.
    or have two heros/goodies in harmony with each other arguing in a good way to solve something.
    the idea two forces pulling towards each other to get from A to be then C would be the climax.

    do you think the idea is good enough and would it attract readers?
     
  2. agentkirb
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    agentkirb Contributing Member

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    Something like this has been done in the past. Although I think you are kind of thinking about it the wrong way. A character can be "bad" and still be the protagonist.

    A good example of this is the movie The Prestige. I'm not going to spoil the ending of the movie, (I suggest you watch it and it's a good example of what you are trying to do)... but the "plot" is that you have these two Magicians that both sort of learned the basics and from the same "mentor/teacher", and an event happens that turns them into rivals. Both of them try to 'one-up' the other on stage and in real life. And the way it ends... it's just crazy. Great movie, I suggest you watch it. And back to your question about the story idea... I think you could have a story like that and it would definitely work if you write it well.
     
  3. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    I have not seen the Prestige but that reminds of the Protagonist.
    will have to check the Prestige.
    the only difference from what I can gather already is that the two similar characters are not in conflict with each other but more into complimenting each other. the only tension there is that of the one pulls them together one for the best rather then the worst.
    so no need rivalry just chivalry.
     
  4. agentkirb
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    agentkirb Contributing Member

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    Well you need a conflict to have a story. It doesn't have to be against a "villain", but it probably has to be against something. Maybe a group of people, maybe nature itself. And I suppose you could have two "Protagonists" that are both against some opposing force.

    What "The Prestige" is is a movie where there really isn't a protagonist and antagonist in the strictest definition of the word... but you just had two people in conflict with each other.
     
  5. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    Yeah, something has to be in the way of the MC. Something needs to be preventing them from reaching their goals, otherwise there is no story.
     
  6. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    isn't this just a tradionalist approach to things/writing?
    surely sometimes thinking outside the box can be refreshing and new.
    I know that I prefer not to comform and therefore always looking out for new ideas.
     
  7. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    Cacian, I've never seen a successful novel do otherwise. What would be fun about reading a story with no suspense of us wanting to know what happens next? How do we pull that off without the character having a goal and something getting in the way?

    A bomb is going off in ten minutes. The characters are happy on the other side of the world and don't care about the bomb. Why would anyone keep reading?

    But if the characters were in the same town as the bomb, and actually cared about being blown up and about others being blown up, then we have suspense. The two characters can be happy as can be together. That's fine, but we need tension. In this case, the enemy is the bomb, and perhaps whoever put the bomb there.

    I wouldn't mind reading a story that tries to be interesting without using these standard ploys, but I have a feeling it will be very boring.
     
  8. Jhunter
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    Jhunter Mmm, bacon. Contributor

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    Yes, you can do this. Just write it well.
     
  9. Jhunter
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    Jhunter Mmm, bacon. Contributor

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    The suspense is waiting to find out which of the two main characters comes out on top.
     
  10. Jhunter
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    Jhunter Mmm, bacon. Contributor

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    The conflict is between the two main characters.
     
  11. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    Every story needs a conflict, something that stands in the way of the mc, otherwise you wouldn't have much of a story IMO. Whether you have two antagonists or two protagonistst they still need to
    a. have another foe who puts obstacles in their way or
    b. be each others antagonists even though they are supposed to be on the same side.
    if nothing is at stakes, why would anyone care to read about them? a plot is how a character reacts under different kinds of stressful or problematic situations, basically, or if you want:

    character+goal+obstacle=plot.
     
  12. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    I agree isn't there just a reflection on what normal life is?
    I am trying to write in parallel with life but differently because I cannot see the excitement of reading something that is exact to life.
    your formula although perfect is also a mirror of what normal life is about.
    I am trying to get away from it you see.
     
  13. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    well, each and everyone of us have our own view of life and our own goals and obstacles. You can just let it be a reflection of the world of someone who doesn't see life as the rest of us. Someone who reacts to problems and obstacles in a different way than most people. would that be interesting enough?
     
  14. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    I think you are right to say that readers vary and yes it takes all sorts to get the world to go round.
    but too much of the same after a while will eventually be hard to shift.
    I know because I find it vey difficult to find a book these days that does it for me so I write instead.
    what I do want to achieve in writing is my idea of books that I want to read so not all is lost..
    originality is the one to beat. writing is easy but getting ideas of your own is not.
     
  15. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    What will your characters do if there is nothing to overcome, no problem to deal with? What is the purpose? What will keep the readers' interest? I can't see myself reading a story that has no problems for the characters - kinda like reading an annual Christmas letter.
     
  16. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    overcoming is part of everyday challenge we overcome things from the minute we are born.
    I much prefer to read something abstract that takes on a shape of something like us with a voice.
    something that will perform wits, cheekiness and generosity as well as understanding but convey a message of wisdom say.
    something that we human do not seem to have time for.
    something to turn to for humour laughter ideas to move us as people, something that provokes jokes makes fun of everyday life.
    I wish not to read sacasm, depression or killing as I am not after being shocked or transported into a world of destructions and heros.
    just an idea.
     
  17. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    It doesn't have to be sarcastic, depressing, or contain killing. But if there's nothing for the characters to work against, to overcome, to discover - what are we reading? Why are we reading? Even Pollyanna had conflict.
     
  18. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    i totally understand what you mean, that is the very same reason for me to write (or one of them at least). But there are several ways to distinguish yourself from other writers, choice of topic is only one. Most topics has already been written about but it's still possible to take one and look at it differently, have your own approach to it. it could be enough for you to stick out as a writer. I think the best thing you can do is think about which are (or better were) your favourite authors and more important: why, and what kind of book you want to read/write. what genre and what you want it to convey to the reader. experiment with different techniques and find your own style. If writing comes easy to you, then congrats. Finding a topic should be relatively easy. But in the end it's more HOW you write it than WHAT you write about. Maybe the story you wanna tell has been written before, but you can still look at it from a different perspective and make it unique in the way you are telling it.
     
  19. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    well I would like to think I read for many reasons not just the one but yes variety is the key success but I do bear in mind that reading is a motion a kind a mood relief, an escapism, an answer, an image, an inspiration, a humour, a discovery, a world of else, something different.
    the human mind is complex and so to say this what they want is dellusional.
    we could never possibly pin point until we have read it or seen it and therefore one is to experiment with different things all the time.
    there is no formula is what I am trying to say.
    but one thing I know is that when I write I enjoy it and very much if not more then reading and therefore this feeling will come through the book and a reader will seize it and so reading is not justabout getting to the end of a story but enjoyign the fact the writer enjoyed writing the story too.
    it is a fine line but easily reached.

    absolutetly hence my dislikes of books turned into movies some works and some don't.
     

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