1. A.L.Mitchell
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    A.L.Mitchell Active Member

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    Would you feel anything for this character?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by A.L.Mitchell, May 29, 2012.

    I'm wondering if you would care for Victor, who has a big part to play. He been in prison once, he's rather tormented about his past, but he wanted to move on. He lived in New York for a while but soon after, he had to LA and since then he life hasn't been great. He is sick in the head, he thinks nothing of the world and against society. I want him to be able to change but he needs to want to do that. He has an interesting relationship with one of the Detective. So I could expands on that a fair bit couldn't I? I want the reader to feel for him and show to be tormented.
     
  2. The Blood Countess
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    The Blood Countess Member

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    For some odd reason, if a character is a Debby Downer for too long without hinting as to why they are unhappy or angry 24/7, the readers end up feeling more annoyed than empathetical. You would have to paint a scene that tugs on our heart strings and explains why he is "sick in the head". That's the only way your readers will be able to see past his current persona and root for change(for him to be happy).

    Then again, you say he's tormented by his past and yet thinks nothing of the world. That's a little contradictory. If I were to kill five children on a school bus and have the state of mind that nothing in the world matters, my crime would not haunt me, nor would I regret doing it. Why? It was an act of violence against the world's morality. If the world means nothing to me, my crime means nothing to me. See my point? Maybe Victor likes to portray someone who is careless through a tough exterior, but internally he is really hurting. <--- Also, by doing this, your readers will see through the "I don't give a damn" act and see that he's genuinely hurt by his past.

    Then there's this: "I want him to be able to change but he needs to want to do that."
    If he doesn't want to change throughout most of the novel, your readers may give up rooting for him. Think in terms of a drug addict. If the person shows absolutely no interest in changing their ways, the people around them will stop offering help that isn't taken or appreciated. So, instead of portraying him as someone who doesn't want change, why not make him into someone who is afraid of change. Seeing as his past bothers him, I couldn't picture Victor as someone who wouldn't want to change. However, I could see him as someone who fears change(or the "failure" to change).

    Happy writing.
     
  3. A.L.Mitchell
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    A.L.Mitchell Active Member

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    That is a good point, I will take that on bored. I will have to think how to intertwine into the story.
     
  4. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's not his background that determines if I will care about him or not, but how you write him. A character doesn't have to have a tormented past for people to care about him. It's all in your hands as the writer.
     
  5. Radrook
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    Radrook Contributing Member

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    All depends on the motives and reasons.
    Why has he been to prison?
    What is meant by "sick in the head"?
    What kind of society is he against?
    Is it a same-sex detective?
    What part of his past is he tormented by?
    What do you mean by "care"?
    What is meant by "thinks nothing of the world"?
     
  6. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think a reader could care for almost any character, no matter what actions they've done. Readers want to like the character they're reading about. I think they go into the story ready to empathize with him/her. You say he's tormented about his past and wanted to move on. Most people can identify with "wanting to move on." People can have sympathy for someone "tormented about his past." If you're really developing the character, and making us see how he thinks and his thoughts and his feelings and try to make us understand why he does something unpalatable. (Maybe the character doesn't understand it himself, and that would generate sympathy for him.) There's always got to be SOME piece of humanity in the character (or at least any character really worth writing about). Anything that the character has in common with the reader will help that. Have him admit to something he doesn't want to acknowledge, or describe what his fears and motivations are. It's not just the actions that create a character -- it's how he reacts to them and what he thinks about them that do.
     
  7. A.L.Mitchell
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    A.L.Mitchell Active Member

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    Thank you for helping me as it has given me some food for thought; Now through, I will need to focus on how i should write him.
     

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