1. Mobhit
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    Mobhit New Member

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    Writing the Teenage Girl(s)

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Mobhit, Apr 2, 2012.

    I need help!!! I am a 30 and a Male. I have created this girl, 15 years old, she is the main char.. I have been writing her pretty well but I feel I am starting to stray from the "emotional status" of a 15 year old girl when put into a tough situation, in my opinion and giving her up bringing and such, she seems less a 15 year girl and more adult. I have been told to rewrite her as an adult cause it would be easier. But her age is extremely important to the story.

    How do you write a character in the age frame of 15 when you have no Idea how a fifteen year old girl's mind works??

    Mid-High Fantasy setting!

    Any suggestions?

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    Thanks

    Mobhit
  2. James Berkley
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    James Berkley Banned

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    Well medieval like times. Fifteen years old. They are probably looking to marry her off if they have not by now. Honestly I would suggest talking to one, but the mindset of a 15 year old will be so unlike one now. Depending on how medieval you make it she could be very much and adult in ways.
  3. Nahriel
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    Nahriel New Member

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    I suggest that you reasearch more about medival class systems and how those worked because girls in diffrent classes was treated diffrent and therefor thought in diffrent ways. A princess might be only concearned about her arragend marrige while a a lower class girl might be worried about putting food in the table. Maybe visit some museums, see what they wire, ask the museum experts or call a professor in history.
  4. There_She_Goes
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    There_She_Goes Member

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    What's good about girls is that they can be almost anything they want (mentally) cause it's usually easy for them to adapt to different role models and such. Boys tend to have a... simpler way to look at things, I suppose. Now please don't tell me I'm a narrow-minded feminist cause I'm not :D. What I mean is that when your character is female, you usually can have a wider perspective as well...
    Why else would little girls read novels with both female and male MCs? I used to read shonen-manga (boys' manga) but I can't imagine a boy reading shojo-manga (girls' manga).

    My problem is quite the opposite... I've got this MC who is male and I'm having huge problems with him cause I'm not exactly sure how boys think. I've noticed that when working on his perspective, I tend to write in quite a feminine way, I suppose... Of course you can do that with a male character, but mine is not like that... :(

    But people are so different! This was just my personal opinion :). Hope it helped even a bit. Good luck with your story!
  5. Erato
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    Erato New Member

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    There is no way to explain how a teenage girl's mind works... trust me.

    I can help you better in specific circumstances, I think. Is it an adventure story? What's at stake? What sort of background does she have?
  6. Cassiopeia Phoenix
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    Cassiopeia Phoenix New Member

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    Haha, good luck with that mate. I'm a 15 year old myself and I don't know how my mind works...
    More context would be nice -- but I agree with James Berkley that probably talking to a 15 years old from the XXI century won't help you much. Different circumstances and such...
    I guess that the setting would make her grow up fast, and I don't see the problem in your MC sounding more like an adult than a teenage girl IF the setting really made her that way.
  7. suddenly BANSHEES
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    suddenly BANSHEES New Member

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    Try not to think of her as just a "teenage girl," but as just a person. Not everyone who's the same age/gender thinks or acts the same way. You said you're a 30-year-old male, but I doubt you have the exact same mindset as every other 30-year-old male in the world.

    Her upbringing, experiences, and the society she lives in will have shaped her into the kind of person she is at the beginning of the story, and the events of the story will probably change her in some way. Keep in mind what role she plays in her society, what her family's social status was, and how she might have been raised to determine the kind of mindset she might have - someone who was very poor and lived with a large family will see things differently than someone who was wealthy and an only child.

    Like Cassiopeia Phoenix said, it's totally plausible for her to seem more mature than most people her age, if she had a lifestyle that made her that way.
  8. Kaymindless
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    Kaymindless New Member

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    I'm going to have to agree with everyone. Maybe the person who gave you that advice was expecting either the cliched version of a girl or the cliched hormones reactions that plague teenagers. Problem being, situation and life will make a child act like an adult so the same goes for a teenager. To expand on what Bansees stated, an older child who grows up in a large, poor family, is more likely to mirror the parents and become the caretaker of the other children. Personally, at 15, even though we had finally managed to move to a more secure lifestyle, I was cooking dinner (Mother worked nights) and would make everyone else plates first before mine, just to make sure there was enough to go around. Ten years later, I still do that. Life creates your characters, not general expectations.
  9. Mckk
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    Mckk Contributing Member Contributor

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    Read Hunger Games - am on chapter 5 at the moment and it's pretty brilliant. MC's a 15 or 16-year-old girl and she's put in some pretty rough situations, and she certainly sounds both adult AND like a teenager.

    Otherwise, how a teenage girl thinks... Now I'm 25 so it's been a while since I've been a teen, but listening to some old music sometimes helps me remember what I was like, and truth be told, judging from the kinda music and lyrics I was really dwelling on and crying over, my mind was preeeeetty messed up :D Very emotional but always trying to hide it, thoughts of rejection and suicide were pretty prevalent (even though really, I had little reason to wanna die - good upbringing, loving parents, good friends) and some pretty serious fights with my mum. Crying it out and listening to destructive music was my outlet :) served its purpose all right considering I barely remember what those issues were.
  10. RowenaFW
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    RowenaFW New Member

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    It's also worth pointing out that the historical context will give you an idea of how "teenagery" she is. What I mean is, girls are going through puberty and maturing earlier because of a healthier diet. Your character may not have developed very much at all, and will be physically more of a child. This means that mentally she will have developed differently, with different hormones and different social pressures. She is no longer really a teenager - but a cross between a child and an adult. You could write her with a more adult woman perspective, with shortfalls and lapses in understanding, or occasional childish behaviours which highlight her youth and unfamiliarity with the things she is dealing with. Good luck!
  11. ithestargazer
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    ithestargazer Member

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    Fifteen year old girls right now are going to be different to fifteen year old girls in the 20th century and the 16th century. What is important is grounding her within your world. How has this girl grown up? How do other young people act? What are her parents like? Etc Etc... I was fifteen six years ago and I can tell you that the way I thought was vastly different to the way some of the other girls thought. And different again to how a girl on the other side of the world thought.

    Focus on your character and figure out her voice. Then, place that voice within the context of your world.
  12. MVP
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    MVP New Member

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    Go to whatever the popular movie is, in theaters right now. Show up early, try not to look creepy, (i.e. take a female friend) and just sit there and take in all the young pop culture a glow around you, before the previews start. Or you could order a popular teen girls magazine. - don't show that to the female friend that you take to the movies. LOL It will be up to you to adapt their present day behaviors to your time period, but this will at least give you the idea of their socialization, etc. to develop how your character would behave.
  13. Cassiopeia Phoenix
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    Cassiopeia Phoenix New Member

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    I would actually say him not to. Popular culture make 15 years old girls look like they are always looking for the newest jeans, worried with their weight/hair/make up, trying to find a boyfriend, etc... In other news, we are still human beings.

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