1. Raven
    Offline

    Raven Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2006
    Messages:
    9,755
    Likes Received:
    68
    Location:
    The NetherWorld

    What Aspects do you put into your charactors

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Raven, Apr 15, 2007.

    What Aspects do you put into your charactors.

    What is it that makes you think of what your charactor is going to be like.
    Do you prefare you lead charactor to be male or female.

    Do you have a dark side to the leading charactor or a questionable past.
     
  2. Crazy Ivan
    Offline

    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2006
    Messages:
    1,295
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    The dumpster behind your McDonalds.
    I find dark sides and questionable pasts to be cheesy, annoying, and gag-worthy. I only use them as parody or to poke fun at the unoriginal losers who use dark sides and questionable pasts.
    My characters tend to always have a touch of cynicism in their observations of life, an openness to the ridiculous and bizarre, and, while they seem to be the perfect stereotype of whatever they're supposed to be, always have a little humorous quirk. Also, I don't care about what gender they are, because while males are easier to write about (People expect less complexity from them), females can be so much more fun to write about. (Because they often get the upper hand on the males.)
     
  3. HellOnEarth
    Offline

    HellOnEarth Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2007
    Messages:
    145
    Likes Received:
    0
    I put human aspects into my character.

    Writing is best when it mimics truth.
     
  4. Domoviye
    Offline

    Domoviye Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,369
    Likes Received:
    21
    Location:
    Proud Canadian. Currently teaching in Nanjing, Chi
    Like HellOnEarth, I make my characters as human as possible. If they have a good reason to have a dark side they have one, either right from the beginning or as the story progresses.
    Male or female doesn't matter. I simply make up a starting point for the character, and let it proceed from there.
    I'm a very free flowing writer. Which has a tendency to get me into trouble. But its better for me than planning exactly how much courage a character will have right at the beginning. Or saying he can be turned to evil if he's offered 'this'.
     
  5. Evelyn
    Offline

    Evelyn Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Seattle
    I usually start with archtypes, e.g., "Loving Mother, 1 (one) each." But then I try to figure out and add in the real traits that a real person would have:

    Sure she's a good and loving mother, but when she's tired and her feet hurt, she can get kind of bitchy (although she feels terrible about it afterwards).

    She's not above putting an ice cube down the back of her 8-year old son's shirt on a hot summer day, and then holding a full-on floor-skidding ice cube war with him, scattering ice and water all over the kitchen (hey, the floor needed mopping anyway).

    But she doesn't really comprehend her son, because she doesn't really understand men in general, and the older he gets, the more unfathomable she finds him (and she feels terribly guilty about this).



    I like to assign noble traits and then to contrast them with flaws - with any luck I get an interesting conflict.
    And it's just plain fun to add in little human features and quirks :)


    - Evelyn
     
  6. mammamaia
    Offline

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,316
    Likes Received:
    1,014
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon
    hell said it best!

    what other 'aspects' would one instill in characters, if not 'human' ones?... if the character is human, that is!...

    so, i guess i'd have to substitute 'appropriate species' for 'human' in hell's answer... ;-)

    what the plot calls for...

    no preference... it would depend on what the plot demands...

    again, if the plot calls for it... if writers lock themselves into any 'preferences' at all, they limit their creative license... would be foolish in the extreme, imo, for a serious writer to have any...
     
  7. Baywriter
    Offline

    Baywriter Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    May 31, 2007
    Messages:
    814
    Likes Received:
    73
    Location:
    Toronto
    Being that all of the characters I have written are based off of actual people, including myself, I feel that the greatest aspect of my characters is the depth of his or her emotions. Human feelings are complex, and having characters that exemplify this makes the characters themselves more believable, especially when adhering to the situation the character is placed in.

    For example, the main character in my novel right now is at war with herself. She is sexually abused by her father, but because of the way he speaks to her and the fact that he's her father, he's got her convincing herself that what he does it okay. Therefore, her character becomes corrupted, and her entire way of thinking is morphed into the ways of the seductress he's made her become. However, there is still that part of her that wants to be free and that knows what he's doing is wrong, though she still plays along in his erotic fantasies.

    She's very real; personal experience tells me so.
     
  8. Daniel
    Offline

    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

    Joined:
    May 14, 2006
    Messages:
    2,571
    Likes Received:
    402
    Location:
    Peoria, Illinois
    My lead character can be either male or female, depending on a story. However, being male, I find it easier to write from a male-perspective.

    I think the most important thing to put in a character is flaws. That makes them human, because everyone makes mistakes.
     
  9. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    I would distinguish between flaws and mistakes. People make mistakes because of incomplete information, pressure to make quick choices, and the priorities they hold at that moment.

    Flaws to me imply something damaged. People can be very different without necessarily being damaged. I wouldn't consider inexperience to be a flaw. And lacking knowledge (distinct from experience) may be a matter of priorities and interest, so I wouldn't define these as flaws either.

    I make this distinction because flaws are structural, but the factors that result in mistakes are constantly changing as the character is shaped by events.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. Daniel
    Offline

    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

    Joined:
    May 14, 2006
    Messages:
    2,571
    Likes Received:
    402
    Location:
    Peoria, Illinois
    That's actually a good point, Cogito. Thanks. I suppose the distinction between the two is larger that I'd actually thought.
     

Share This Page