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  1. Arannir

    Arannir Active Member

    Sep 16, 2013
    Likes Received:
    United Kingdom

    A Believable Father

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Arannir, Dec 6, 2013.

    So, my MC is the captain of a fishing vessel away from his family most of the week and as I don't have children myself, I was wondering if anyone could help me to make him a little more believable whilst missing them?

    Something that also takes place later on is the death of his oldest daughter, which takes a detrimental effect on him. So any suggestions on how he'd mourn? Possible alcohol dependency? Also would it normal completely change his attitude and join the rebellion, of which he follows their beliefs but detests their actions, to avenge her death?

    Finally would his strict upbringing make him more sympathetic and loving with his children?
  2. chicagoliz

    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

    May 30, 2012
    Likes Received:
    This may be extremely difficult for you to write if you don't feel you can adequately get into your MC's head.

    As far as the mourning -- it's all over the map. People mourn in different ways. I'd suggest looking online for some support groups/websites for grieving parents and "eavesdrop." Depending on the time period in which this takes place, and the types of people the man is surrounded by, and the type of job he has, there are different extents that he'll likely go to hide his grief or try to suppress it.

    Similarly, his strict upbringing could go either way as far as how loving he is toward his children. Some people with strict, cold parents end up treating their children the same way. Others make a very conscious decision to do the exact opposite. It's all dependent upon the personality of the character.
  3. EdFromNY

    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

    Jun 13, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Queens, NY
    You might start with the fact that he has chosen a line of work that will keep him away from home for long stretches at a time. Some people agonize over that while others simply put it in a box as something they just have to live with. I'd say it depends a lot on how you are building the relationships in his life.

    Alcohol dependency is usually something that evolves over a long time due to an addictive personality. As Liz says, mourning is a very individual thing. Maybe if he's been working in a job away from his family, he'll be wracked by guilt, and if he's the type to bury his emotions, he may take it out on the men who work for him.

    This is the first mention of a rebellion, so I have no idea what you mean. But, as a general statement, I would say the two might be related only if the forces against which the rebellion is aimed were responsible (or are perceived as responsible) for her death.

    That depends on his personality in general and also on what you mean by "strict". Liz already touched on this, and to her comments I would only add this: if by "strict" you mean violent, the notion of a "cycle of violence" in which the abused becomes the abuser is well documented.

    Good luck.
  4. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Nov 21, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Coquille, Oregon
    my second ex-husband was brought up a strict catholic by stern/stolid parents of swiss and german extraction and he was incapable of being either sympathetic or loving toward either his wife or his children, sorry to say... so, i'd have to guess your character might be the same...
  5. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    May 19, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Not really. People react in such completely different ways, each according to his or her own nature. Therefore, characters can as well. How believable the character is will not be answered here. It will be answered by the quality of your writing. If you don't hit it on the first try, you will have as many revision passes as you need to work on it.
  6. SuperVenom

    SuperVenom Contributing Member

    Nov 11, 2010
    Likes Received:
    South Wales
    I agree with cogito, same for the effect of daughter's death on him. it depends where you want to go with it and him. The reasoning and consequence of his choosen vice is what will move the story forward. so best not to just throw one in.

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